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GOSPEL COMMENTARIES


 

 

 

I AM THE DOOR (JOHN 10: 1-10)

He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold but climeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. Only Christ and His sheep can see; whoever claims to see is a thief.

There are many who, according to custom of life, are called good people but are not Christian; they observe the law, pay respect to parents, abstain from adultery, commit no murder, they do not steal nor lie. And they ask boastfully, "Are we blind also?" What benefit is living well if it does not lead to eternal life? It is useless to persuade man to live well if it does not lead him to eternal life. To live well and yet not follow Christ is to climb another way. . .he is a thief and a robber. . .and his intention is to kill and steal, not to preserve and to save.

So all, who say, "just live well and you will live happily," are telling you not to enter by the door; their intention is to destroy, to slay and to murder you.

The Pharisees were such. Their voices preached the coming of Christ; but they did not recognize Him when He came. They boasted they knew much about Him; but they disowned Him when He came.  Many boast that they see and even are enlightened by Christ, yet are heretics. The Christ they preach is fabricated. They use Christian words but different realities.

Christ's sheepfold is the Catholic Church. Enter by working for Christ's glory and not your own. To seek your own glory is to scatter Christ's sheep, not to gather them. Christ is a low gateway. He who enters must bow and humble himself, he cannot enter the door; thus he will have to climb the wall, only to fall. 

The wretched who do not enter by the door but climb some other way will surely fall.  Let them be humble and enter by the door.

A thief is one who calls the sheep belonging to another his own; what he steals, he also kills.

And the Shepherd called his own by name; and His sheep know His voice. And a stranger they do not follow but do flee from him; for they do not know the voice of strangers.

I am the door to all those who are united to Me. Those who are apart from Me are thieves and robbers who come to steal and to destroy.

Many listen to the words of Christ but many do not hear. Judas listened but did not hear, thus, he was not a sheep ". . .he was a wolf". He followed Christ but laid snares for the Shepherd.  Yet some of those who crucified Christ later on became sheep, like Longinus. So those who were not sheep began to hear and those who were sheep did not hear. Some who were wolves followed the Shepherd's voice, and some who were sheep contradicted the Shepherd.  It was a sheep who slew the Shepherd.

At first the wolves did not hear. But when the voice of the Shepherd was heard, they became sheep. Becoming sheep, they found the Shepherd and followed Him.

St. John Chrysostom,  On John

 

 

 

 

 

(01-21-04)

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