I will care for my sheep like a shepherd

//I will care for my sheep like a shepherd

Thursday, February 23

I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; those too I must bring in, . . . and they will become one flock, one shepherd.John 10:16.

Do those of the other sheep need to know the names of all those who are anointed today? The short answer is no. Why not? Because even if someone has received the heavenly calling, that person has received only an invitation, not a final confirmation of the reward. That is why Satan raises up “false prophets . . . to mislead, if possible, even the chosen ones.”  No one can know whether an anointed Christian will receive his heavenly reward until Jehovah judges that person to be worthy of such a prize. Jehovah makes this determination and gives him the final sealing either sometime before he dies faithful or sometime before the outbreak of “the great tribulation.” It would be pointless, then, for anyone now living on earth to try to ascertain who among God’s servants will eventually be part of the 144,000.

COMMENTARY

The teaching that there are two separate destinies for God’s sheep, a heavenly and an earthly destiny —dependent upon God’s choosing —is unique to Jehovah’s Witnesses. Certainly, it is one of the most misunderstood and controversial doctrines as well.

It is amazing that more so-called Bible students cannot grasp what is a basic, fundamental, scriptural teaching; namely, that God intends to restore paradise to this earth and to that end it is his will that righteous people will survive the violent end of this present civilization and form the nucleus of a new world.

In the 10th chapter of John Jesus spoke of himself as the shepherd, and also of “other sheep” whom he will bring into the flock. Self-styled Bible teachers, including some from among Jehovah’s Witnesses, suppose that the “other sheep” of whom Jesus spoke were the non-Jewish Christians who began to be brought into the flock when Peter baptized Cornelius and his family. However, a careful consideration of the facts proves otherwise.

Jesus began his discussion of his shepherding by saying: “Most truly I say to you, the one who does not enter into the sheepfold through the door but climbs in by another way, that one is a thief and a plunderer. But the one who enters through the door is the shepherd of the sheep. The doorkeeper opens to this one, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.”

The sheepfold that Jesus entered was the nation of Israel. It was the original sheep pen. And John the baptizer was the doorkeeper who opened to Jesus and introduced him to God’s sheep. However, Jesus led his Father’s sheep out of that enclosure and into a new arrangement to which Jesus is the door. He went on to say: “When he has brought all his own out, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him, because they know his voice. They will by no means follow a stranger but will flee from him, because they do not know the voice of strangers…Most truly I say to you, I am the door for the sheep. All those who have come in place of me are thieves and plunderers; but the sheep have not listened to them. I am the door; whoever enters through me will be saved, and that one will go in and out and find pasturage.”

In his saying “that one will go in and out and find pasturage” indicates that Jesus was likening the Christian congregation to a sheep pen that contained his entire flock. Ultimately, the shepherd intends to lead the sheep to the green pastures of paradise —whether heavenly or earthly. That is where he intends to “bring” all his sheep, including the other sheep, whom he too “must bring in.”

Now, reasoning on the matter, what sort of protective enclosure were people of the nations in prior to their becoming Christians? The reason that question is pertinent is because Jesus stated that the other sheep comprised a separate fold prior to their being brought in to form one flock.

As stated already, the natural Jews were somewhat protected by the law and were in a state of readiness when the shepherding Messiah arrived. And the faithful ones responded to his voice. In contrast, Paul, the apostle to the nations, said that people of the nations were alienated from the state of Israel and were without God in the world. The point is, those gentile believers were not gathered into any sort of fold before they were taken into the one flock.

On the other hand, neither is it reasonable to suppose that the millions of persons who presently identify themselves as Jesus’ other sheep were at any time prior to their becoming Jehovah’s Witnesses in any sort of sheep fold either.

The question is: When does Jesus bring in those other sheep to form one flock? The 34th chapter of Ezekiel has the answer. In that portion of prophecy God addresses himself to the shepherds of his sheep, saying to them: “Woe to the shepherds of Israel, who have been feeding themselves! Is it not the flock that the shepherds should feed? You eat the fat, you clothe yourselves with the wool, and you slaughter the fattest animal, but you do not feed the flock. You have not strengthened the weak or healed the sick or bandaged the injured or brought back the strays or looked for the lost; rather, you have ruled them with harshness and tyranny. So they were scattered because there was no shepherd; they were scattered and became food for every wild beast of the field. My sheep were straying on all the mountains and on every high hill; my sheep were scattered over all the surface of the earth, with no one searching for them or seeking to find them.”

The prophecy of Ezekiel ostensibly speaks to the shepherds of Israel who were responsible for the national calamity that befell them when Babylon destroyed Jerusalem and the Israelites and Jews were scattered. In reality, the prophecy is a judgment against Christian overseers at the time of Christ’s second coming. That is evident by reason of the fact that God turns over the responsibility of shepherding his scattered sheep to “David.” Verses 23-24 so state: “I will raise up one shepherd over them, my servant David, and he will feed them. He himself will feed them and become their shepherd. And I, Jehovah, will become their God, and my servant David a chieftain among them. I myself, Jehovah, have spoken.”

Obviously the greater David did not begin shepherding the Israelites after their return from Babylon. Nor does the prophecy apply to the first century. How do we know? Because the gathering of the sheep is preliminary to the attack of Gog of Magog upon the restored “Israel.”

The point is, all of God’s sheep are in a flock prior to Christ’s coming, or at least they were at one point. However, the sheep are abused and scattered because of the incompetence of the shepherds to whom they were entrusted. And eventually all are scattered. 

Amazingly, the Watchtower claims that God entrusted his sheep to the political rulers and worldly tyrants and actually expects them to minister to them. Franz even concocted the phrase “governmental shepherds” to describe them. His justification for doing so was that the negligent shepherds of Israel were the kings and princes, hence “governmental shepherds,” if you please. However, it seems to have alluded the brilliant Bible scholar that all the kings of both Israel and Judah were bound by the covenant that Moses mediated and were required by law to read the law daily so as to successfully shepherd God’s nation.

But even though the would-be interpreters acknowledge that the sheep are not even genuine sheep, only claiming to be such by virtue of their being nominal churchgoers, it is mystifying why God would expect the wicked tyrants of this world to search for lost sheep who only pretend to be his sheep anyway. And what would happen if they actually found one of these lost fake sheep? Could they possibly be expected to bind their wounds or care for them? Let Jehovah’s Witnesses try to make sense of it.

Needless to say, God would not entrust his precious sheep, for whom Christ died, to just anyone. As the apostle noted God provided apostles, prophets, teachers and shepherds for the building up of the body. However, there is a judgement yet to come. The letter of James cautions would-be teachers that they will receive a heavier judgment. And in connection with the slaves who are appointed to feed his sheep, Jesus said of them: “Indeed, everyone to whom much was given, much will be demanded of him, and the one who was put in charge of much will have more than usual demanded of him.”

Yes, all of those who are put in charge of caring for God’s sheep will be held accountable, but especially the slaves charged with providing the sheep their food at the proper time.

Look at the situation today. Can it not be said that the leadership of Jehovah’s Witnesses fit the description of the negligent shepherds? How so?

Do they not feed themselves with the best? Like the kings of Israel, they have even erected a grand palatial headquarters for themselves from the sweat of thousands of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Their sumptuous appetite for worldly accruements testifies against them; luxury cars, paid healthcare, first-class travel around the world. They enjoying privileges and comforts that many ordinary witnesses cannot afford.

Whereas, Paul labored day and night, sometimes in hunger and nakedness, suffering persecution from false brothers, working with his own hands so as not to impose an expensive burden on the brothers, the leadership of Jehovah’s Witnesses are treated like kings —nay, gods! But any who do not agree with them they slaughter —judicially executing any and all who run afoul of them. They have spent millions of dollars surpassing the plaintive cry of abused children. All the while persecuting those who are sickened over the Watchtower’s rampant hypocrisy.

Some sheeplike persons who wish to be baptized are prevented because they cannot in good conscience confess belief in the Watchtower’s artfully contrived invisible parousia. Indeed, it is impossible to be one of Jehovah’s Witnesses if you do not give glory to the Governing Body. Like the prophecy states, “for with your flank and shoulder you kept pushing, and with your horns you kept shoving all the sick ones until you had scattered them abroad.”

In this way, and in many other ways, the shepherds feed on the sheep. Consequently, the judgment of Jehovah has already been pre-determined: “This is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah says: ‘I am against the shepherds, and I will demand an accounting of them for my sheep, and I will dismiss them from feeding my sheep, and the shepherds will no longer feed themselves. I will rescue my sheep from their mouth, and they will no longer be food for them.’”

But while, so far, it is only a relative few who have been skinned and lost, in the immediate future the entire flock will be scattered. This happened in the first century as well, when the shepherd was struck and the sheep were scattered. But the coming of Christ will be far more tumultuous, which is why the 34th chapter of Ezekiel describes it as “the day of clouds and thick gloom.” (See essay: Woe to the Shepherds Who Have Become Feeders of Themselves.)

The point is, as regards the other sheep who are not of this fold, the two will be made one flock under Christ after the tribulation is cut short. That is when the re-gathering takes place. That is when the blessed enter into spiritual paradise. That is when the scripture will be fulfilled: “And I will make a covenant of peace with them, and I will rid the land of vicious wild beasts, so that they may dwell securely in the wilderness and sleep in the forests. I will make them and the area around my hill a blessing, and I will cause the rain to fall at the proper time. Blessings will pour down like the rains. The trees of the field will yield their fruit, and the soil will give its produce, and they will dwell securely on the land. And they will have to know that I am Jehovah when I break their yoke bars and rescue them from those who enslaved them. They will no longer become something for the nations to prey upon, and the wild beasts of the earth will not devour them, and they will dwell in security, with no one to make them afraid.”

2017-02-24T06:38:58+00:00 February 23rd, 2017|Commentary|44 Comments
  • Bklyn Kevin

    Absolutely a wonderful article Robert thank you, And in fact it clears up a lot of misconceptions.

  • Bklyn Kevin

    If anybody is in touch with Annie and Victor could you please send this article to them I would greatly appreciate. Thank you.

    • Beverly kenyon

      Done Bklyn Kevin.

      • Bklyn Kevin

        Thank you dear sister!.

    • Burt Reynolds

      I got disfellowshipped from Annie’s site! Unable to send anything. Sorry.

      • Jamie Mac

        Hi Burt, for what reason, do you know?

        • Burt Reynolds

          Yes. I was not persuaded to believe that Holy Spirit was being portioned out at the memorial this year at eight o’clock in the evening after sun set. Victor had no answer to whether that was going to be done on British time, eastern, central or western time in the USA or any other place, or that only he knew the day or the hour and no one else. And of course, as with arguing against the governing body, I got kicked out for arguing and for being too thick to understand the maths. That happened a lot to me at school, I can tell you, especially in trying to learn French and Latin. Like victors hypothesis, it was all double Dutch to me.

      • Joseph Stephan

        You’ve been a bad boy Burt, the whole thing is quite bizarre.

        • Burt Reynolds

          That’s nothing! I’m getting streams of hate messages from Victor now, direct to my iPad. I guess I’m just too evil, even for Victor! He thinks I’m twisting what he’s saying but I can’t even understand what he’s saying so that can’t be right. I didn’t read the rest. It’s like trying to translate Arabic into Swahili with a touch of pidgin English. (I think….not quite sure).

          • ewatchman

            You are hysterical. Thanks for the laughs.

          • Bklyn Kevin

            In regards to anybody who does not heed Jehovah’s commands.

            Deuteronomy 28:
            15 “And it must occur that if you will not listen to the voice of Jehovah your God by taking care to do all his commandments and his statutes that I am commanding you today, all these maledictions must also come upon you and overtake you:
            28 Jehovah will strike you with (madness) and loss of sight and bewilderment of heart. Read more>
            https://www.jw.org/en/publications/bible/bi12/books/deuteronomy/28/

            2 Timothy 3:
            8 Now in the way that Jan′nes and Jam′bres resisted Moses, so these also go on resisting the truth, men completely corrupted in mind, disapproved as regards the faith.

            9 Nevertheless, they will make no further progress, for their (madness) will be very plain to all, even as the [madness] of those [two men] became. Read more>
            https://www.jw.org/en/publications/bible/bi12/books/2-timothy/3/#v55003008

          • Beverly kenyon

            Mega lol Burt…that’s so funny! Can’t stop laughing at that!

          • Beverly kenyon

            Wow, Burt, hate messages from an anointed one…surely not as Victor claims to be anointed.

            • Bklyn Kevin

              John 13:
              34 I am giving YOU a new commandment, that YOU love one another; just as I have loved YOU, that YOU also love one another.
              35 By this all will know that YOU are my disciples, if YOU have love among yourselves.”

              1 John 4:
              20 If anyone makes the statement: “I love God,” and yet is hating his brother, he is a liar. For he who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot be loving God, whom he has not seen.

              21 And this commandment we have from him, that the one who loves God should be loving his brother also.

            • Beverly kenyon

              Sorry Bklyn Kevin, only just saw this post of your’s. I know these scriptures so well but sometimes I fail miserably living up to them. I’m capable of hating but I don’t want to. I hate conflict and disharmony but it doesn’t take much to set me off. 1John 4:20 is the scripture that I identify with and I’m glad and happy for the reminder Bklyn Kevin as I’m always looking for ways to improve and keep on track. Just got to work on my self control when it comes to emotions and to recognise when the red mist decends.

            • Bklyn Kevin

              That particular message was meant for burt concerning victor and his hate mongering. Sorry about that.

            • Burt Reynolds

              Beverly, everyone should know by now that I only accept the very finest, genuine, refined and superlative false prophet hate mail, accusations and rattlesnake venom into my Spam Mail where it is matured for three long weeks and a day in a lukewarm oak vat of finest vitriol and mouldering contempt, ( best before 11th April), before being poured out through the dead battery of my iPad into my junk mail box, before being consigned to the anonymity of a back street in Facebook and there to languish in the cesspit effluvia for eternity where they can prophesy away in peace.

            • Beverly kenyon

              Mmmm…finest, genuine, refined rattlesnake venom and oak vat vitriol, handmade by the superlative false prophet…delicious! Cheers! Big ears! Lol. Burt, you are a true wordsmith. Don’t know why, but this afternoon I kept thinking of you and your lion, Rufus and was giggling to myself.

            • Jamie Mac

              Burt, you have to write a book to show off all your talents in the composition department. A good title would be the ‘ The Day After April 11th’. Better write it quick though.

            • Beverly kenyon

              That is funny! Lol.

  • Sandy

    I remember sitting at the meeting or assembly and wondering where all the loving elders were that were devoted to the flock — even crying at night over the different problems their sheep had…. I never saw real help or spiritual guidance from most of them. My family felt the same way….. and my father was an elder…. But this ( as well as all your other posts – which I have read several times over ) brings home the real facts of who these folks really are — shepherds ? No ! ! — and for the most part not even men who take God seriously. Tears come to my eyes when I think how much these men could do to help all of God’s sheep find shelter from the storms of Satan’s world – instead they become part of the storm.

    • Joseph Stephan

      It’s such a blessing having you and all our dear sweet sisters on here commenting. I am confident that women are going to have a greater role in the new system , making this planet a true loving spiritual paradise! ❤❤❤

      • Joel

        I agree Joe. It’s funny you mention that about all the fine sisters commenting here, because I had noticed that a short while back how there are so many sisters joining the E-Watchman family. And you know what else I’ve noticed, how smart, astute and in-depth their comments are! Yes, I myself have benefited greatly by reading their thoughts and insights into Brother King’s brilliant commentary. Keep up the great work sisters! Your insights are highly appreciated, and highly sought. All of you are indeed a blessing to us all. We love you.

      • Brian

        Sure Joseph, but given the chance in this system arrangement the women that make it into power seem to be just as bad as some of the men. Clinton and Thatcher just for starters!

        • Joseph Stephan

          Those two are not women , their power hungry Diabolical Narcissist.

    • amen

  • “Amazingly, the Watchtower claims that God entrusted his sheep to the political rulers and worldly tyrants and actually expects them to minister to them.”

    but Jesus says right there -> ” They will by no means follow a stranger but will flee from him, because they do not know the voice of strangers…”

    so would “sheep who only pretend to be his” know Jesus voice? no, if they did then they would not be part of or follow political rulers and worldly tyrants and actually expect to be ministered to.

    but actually the WT is right on one point. they (organization leaders of Jehovah’s witnesses) are the tyrants who fail to minister properly to His sheep. so Jehovah did entrust his sheep to tyrants. (as he foretold they would become) like any genuine sheep who may be fooled in the Christendom section of Babylon by faults doctrine/ teachings, so too is Satan’s operation of error within the WT org among Jehovah’s witnesses.

    “get out of her my people” makes sense.

  • Francis Bencharles

    Hi Robert:

    Nice article. Even though I don’t agree with all of your conclusions, I do agree with many and that things will be very different soon. Very soon all those that find themselves part of a salvation covenant (whether the covenant is to be a part of Jesus Bride or some other covenant approved by Jehovah ) with God will be harvested out of this system by the angels before it’s destruction.

    The first judgment and separation will occur with the Watchtower. They are holding the remnant of Jesus Bride within their “city” and in their symbolic “prisons” along with other covenant holders, but these will soon be released when the symbolic “wall” of the Watchtower is brought low and the faithful ones within those walls are encouraged to leave when they are called by the voice of the true Shepherd. Jesus called his disciples likewise out of Judaism in his day and the faithful listened. They will do the same when he (through his wife, his flesh) calls them out at the end of this system.

    My message is for all faithful followers of Jehovah and his Son (no matter where you find yourself now) to keep an ear out for the sound of the true Shepherd’s voice. His sheep know that voice and when they hear it’s distinct sound they will follow it’s instructions.

    The rest of the last days will be solely for the separation of those that show faith and/or love toward God and Christ and who are in a salvation covenant from those who do not and are not in the rest of Babylon. Leave the fighting and bickering to those who lack faith and do not show love. Gravitate toward those who show both faith and love and you should be OK in the long run.

    We do not have to agree on every little thing. The important thing is that we agree with God and his Son. One day all those living will agree and it will be through the teaching of the Kingdom. Things will be so much better for everyone at that time.

    Frank

    • Revv_zone@gmail.com Please8834

      What is it you dont agree with in this article if you dont mind me asking?

  • e.v.g

    Great article
    Tyrants in my work place and tyrants in the KH…. I’M GOING CRAZY!!!

  • Andres Felipe

    What is Annie’s website to visit

  • Burt Reynolds

    The article begins by discussing the unique understanding of the witnesses that there is both an earthly and heavenly calling, but appears to dwell on the aspect of the scattered sheep who have an earthly calling.. I.e., from the nations who have no god, from the witnesses themselves and from those who cannot in conscience get baptised. However, I cannot see where the heavenly and earthly calling is explained. I expect I am being thick here, it’s early morning and I haven’t had a cup of tea yet, but will someone help me out. I think I have got ahead of the subject matter here. Thanks. Very good article though.

  • Searcher

    Come on Robert, Rutherford dreamed up this fantasy at the same time he dream up the saints returning in 1935. Clearly Jesus was talking about inviting the gentles into his fold. He came to preach to the nation of Israel, then it was up to his followers to invite the Gentiles into his fold, it’s really not that complicated.

    “Then Jesus left Galilee and went north to the region of Tyre. He didn’t want anyone to know which house he was staying in, but he couldn’t keep it a secret. Right away a woman who had heard about him came and fell at his feet. Her little girl was possessed by an evil spirit, and she begged him to cast out the demon from her daughter. Since she was a Gentile, born in Syrian Phoenicia, Jesus told her, “First I should feed the children—my own family, the Jews. It isn’t right to take food from the children and throw it to the dogs.”She replied, “That’s true, Lord, but even the dogs under the table are allowed to eat the scraps from the children’s plates.”Good answer!” he said. “Now go home, for the demon has left your daughter.” And when she arrived home, she found her little girl lying quietly in bed, and the demon was gone.”

    Jesus was talking about inviting Gentile (us) into the covenant, not some spurious date dreamed up by Rutherford (1935), Yes that’s the date your supporting with this doctorine. Rutherford dreamed up this fantasy your supporting, you might as well support the 1914 nonsense as well.

  • KB

    One of the best explanations of Ezekiel 34 yet. Robert, I like to download many of your articles. There was once a PDF button to easily down load them. Will that feature come back?

    • KB

      Also Robert, what’s the thumbs up button under the pictures for?

      • ewatchman

        Hmmm. I just noticed that myself. I guess my helper added some sort of thingy-ding there. I suppose the thumbs up is supposed to make Google notice something or other. I just clicked on it and gave myself a thumbs up. Is that immodest of me?

        • KB

          No. I was afraid it was something that would blow my anonymity or something. I just love being a grown man and continuously have to watch my step.

    • ewatchman

      I forget exactly, but I think there was a compatibility problem with that particular so-called plug-in. Let me see if I can find something else.

      • KB

        Thanks. Great to have the PDF button back.

  • Andres Felipe

    Sigo pensando . Me parece que los gentiles son las otras ovejas pues cristo dijo que tenía otras ovejas que ” también ” tenía que traer . Y tu explicación me dice que esta es una aplicación para los últimos días… estoy mal ?

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