John 10:16 “And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; AND THERE SHALL BE ONE FOLD, AND ONE SHEPHERD.

Lest we forget the context of this statement, I will give a little background. Jesus had miraculously healed a man who had been born blind (John 9); it became known by the people that the man was healed. The Sanhedrin (the Jewish council) called the man into their midst to testify of his miracle, and how he’d received it. The man’s parents were called as witnesses to prove that he had, indeed, been born blind. His parents, however, feared to testify of Jesus Christ because the Sanherin had already determined to excommunicate any who counted Jesus to be the Messiah (John 9:22).

The man born blind did not waver in his testimony before the sanhedrin, but freely declared that Jesus must be from God or else He could have done no miracle: “If this man were not of God, He could do nothing.” (9:33)

At this testimony, the sanhedrin excommunicated the man who had been healed (v.34, 22). He was now spiritually derelict because he testified of Christ, a Jew, but cast out officially from the people of God by the council appointed to Moses’ seat (Numbers 11) – the rulers of Israel.

When Jesus heard what had happened to the man, He went and found him. How marvelous it is that when we have been rejected by men, we can yet be received by Christ! In the state of rejection, having been excommununicated in Israel by those in Moses’ seat, Jesus declared to the man plainly that Himself was the Son of God, thus justifying the man for his testimony – that testimony for which he had been excommunicated. (9:35-37)

The man had been expelled from earthly Israel, but accepted by Jesus, whom he WORSHIPPED as the Son of God (9:38).

Jesus then made a declaration about the man’s situation, which some of the Pharisees overheard. He said: “For judgment I am come into the world, that they which see not might see; and they which see might be made blind.”

Here, given the context, Jesus is declaring that He came to reveal Himself to those who have not known Him (those who are not members of earthly Israel – as this man was no longer a member, having been cast out by the religious rulers of earthly Israel), and that those who should know the Son of God (earthly Israel) to be blind to Him.

In responding to Jesus declaration, some Pharisees asked Jesus if they were also blind (John 9:40).

In response to their question, Jesus frankly condemned them as sinners, declaring: “If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, ‘We see;’ therefore your sin remaineth.” Why? These are those who especially should have percieved Messiah, having been trained thoroughly in the Law, and Prophets. They continued declaring that they had spiritual insight… yet they had just expelled a man for percieving that Jesus was the Messiah! In a short while they would hold judgment counsel upo Christ, Himself, and determine that He must die (after He raised Lazarus from the dead to be precise (John 11:46-53).) Jesus personally received, and justified the man whom they had officially expelled from Israel.

After making His frank statement condemning the Pharisees as sinners, Jesus continued to answer the question (to give greater clarity) using a parable. Unfortunately, a chapter break often causes these conversations to seem seperate from eachother, but contextually the same conversation continues until verse 21 of chapter 10.

Jesus is still answering their question when He begins telling the parable of the sheepfold; without understanding that context, there are a lot of things we’ll miss in reading chapter 10.

Using the parable, Jesus declares Himself to be: 1) the only True entrance into spiritual Israel – remember the context: the sanhedrin (as the spiritual rulers of Israel) had excommunicated the healed man for testifying of Christ – declaring: “I am the door: by ME if any man enter in he shall be saved…” (10:9)

Understanding the context, Jesus is literally saying (my paraphrase): ‘No, the sanhedrin does not decide who’s in, and who’s out of Israel I do.’

Jesus goes on to declare Himself to be not only the entrance to the True Israel, but also: 2) the only rightful leader of the True Israel (and compares the sanhedrin to hirelings which flee the sheep to protect themselves – a thing which they expressly do when they condemn Christ to death to preserve themselves (John 11:48)).

“I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth His life for the sheep. …14 I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.”

Jesus declares Himself to be both the door, and the ruler of Israel; and in fact, He declares something even more shocking, and offensive. When the Jews pry Him as to whether He is Christ, He declares that they are not of His fold (True Israel) at all: (read the following, bearing in mind He is still speaking in defense of the man whom the Jews had just excommunicated)

“But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.” (10:26-28)

Jesus is certainly speaking of His rulership of True Israel. When Pilate later asks Jesus whether He was King of the Jews, Jesus answered thus:
My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.

Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice. (John 18:36-37)

Jesus is the King of Israel – the king of the Jews; but His kingdom (Israel) is not of this world.

John 10:16 “And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; AND THERE SHALL BE ONE FOLD, AND ONE SHEPHERD.

All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.  (John 6:37)

Believe in Christ, and you, too, shall be recieved into His Kingdom.