February 2023

The Fourth of the Seven I AMs

John 10:11

                                                     THE HIRED HAND (The Hireling)

In Palestine, the shepherd had the responsibility to protect the sheep. If any of the sheep were injured or killed, the shepherd had to prove it was not his fault. Evidence “would be a couple of leg bones or part of an ear from the jaws of a wild animal” (The Bible Knowledge Commentary).  

A hired hand was paid to take care of the sheep. When the sheep were not in danger, he had no problem taking care of the sheep. But when danger came, he was more likely to be concerned about himself than the sheep.  The Apostle John says when he sees the wolf coming …  he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. The man runs away because he’s a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. (John 10:12-13, NIV) John MacArthur gives the text a spiritual application. He says, “The hireling (or hired hand) represents religious leaders who perform their duty in good times, but who never display sacrificial care for the sheep in times of danger.”

Dr. W. M. Thomson in The Land and the Bookwrites: “I have listened with intense interest to … descriptions of (faithful shepherds in) downright and desperate fights with … savage beasts … to defend (their) flock …  The true shepherd never (hesitates) to risk, and even to lay down, his life for his sheep.”

Jesus says I AM THE GOOD SHEPHERD. THE GOOD SHEPHERD LAYS DOWN HIS LIFE FOR THE SHEEP. (John 10:11, NIV) We are “the sheep.” The Apostle Paul says God made him (Jesus) who had no sin to be sin for us so that in him we might become the righteousness (that we might become in Christ all that we could never be in ourselves, that which is required) of God.              (2 Corinthians 5:21, NIV) Jesus loves us so much that I think it is beyond human comprehension. Jesus reminds us that Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.  (John 15:13, NIV)

                                     WE, WHO PROFESS JESUS AS SAVIOR AND LORD,


We are to love each other as Jesus loves us. John says This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. (1 John 3:16) We who are born-again are called to the same kind of sacrificial giving toward one another.  

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The Fifth of the Seven I AMs

Jesus said to Mary,

I am the resurrection and the life, He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?

(John 11:25-26, NIV)

The sisters Martha and Mary had sent word to Jesus that their brother Lazarus was sick. They wanted Jesus to come immediately and heal their brother. The Bible says when Jesus arrived at the home of Martha and Mary Lazarus had already been dead for four days. Martha said to Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died” (John 11:21, NIV). To comfort her Jesus said, “Your brother will rise again” (John 11:23, NIV).  Martha did not have a full understanding of what Jesus meant. The Bible says, Jesus went to Lazarus’s tomb and called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out”!” The dead man came out … (John 11:43-44, NIV).    

Sooner or later every one of us will die physically. But there is good news! JESUS IS THE AUTHOR OF THE RESURRECTION. HE ALONE CAN RAISE THOSE WHO ARE PHYSICALLY DEAD.

What did Jesus mean when He said to Martha, He who believes in me will live, even though he dies? He was thinking about the death of sin. Even in the world that we live in today, the reign of the Messiah has already begun. Jesus asked Martha, Do you believe this (John 11:26b, NIV)? And you, do you believe it?

The Apostle Paul says, … As for you, you were dead in your …  sins, which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world … because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, (makes us alive spiritually) … (Read Ephesians 2:1 & 4, NIV).

William Barclay tells us the story of a man whose name was Tokichi. He was a murderer of men, women, and children. Anyone who stood in his way was pitilessly eliminated. He was in prison awaiting death. When some women tried to talk to him through the bars. He only stared at them, like he was a caged and savage animal. Finally, they gave up their attempt to speak to him; but they gave him a Bible. He began to read it, and having started, Tokichi could not stop. He came to the words Jesus said on the Cross: Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.Those words broke him. “I stopped,” he said. “I was stabbed to the heart as if I had been pierced by a five-inch nail. Shall I call it the love of Christ? Shall I call it His compassion? I do not know what to call it. I only know that I believed, and my hardness of heart was changed.” Later, when the jailer came to lead the doomed man to the scaffold, the jailer found a smiling radiant man. The murderer had been born again. Literally, Christ brought Tokichi to life.



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The Sixth of the Seven I AMs

Jesus said I am the way and the truth and the life.

No one comes to the Father except through me.

John 14:6

Many years ago, I decided to take a shortcut to drive from Tennessee to Iowa. The shortcut I took was through the bootheel of Missouri. Little did I know that I would regret it. Multiple times I drove in and out of the same two counties. I wished somebody could have been with me to show me the way.    

William Barclay says the Jews talked much about how men must walk and the ways of God. To Moses God said Walk in all the way that the Lord your God commanded you …(Deuteronomy 5:33). The Psalmist said Teach me your way, O Lord; lead me in a straight path … (Psalm 27:11)

Jesus says I AM THE WAY.

He does not (solely) point the way; he is also the way.” (The Interpreter’s Bible). The disciples were amazed at his words. … Jesus (told them) … how hard it is to enter the Kingdom of God (Mark 10:24! In Matthew 7:13-14 Jesus says, Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction … (Matthew 7:13-14). The wide gate includes all religions of works and self-righteousness, with no single way (cf. Acts 4:12); but it leads to hell, not heaven. Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to (Luke 13:24, NIV). The Apostle Paul says, … by grace (unmerited favor) you have been saved, through faith – not by works … (Ephesians 2:8-9).  

Jesus said I AM THE TRUTH.

The Interpreter’s Bible saysJesus’ words I AM THE TRUTH are“The divine reality, the goal of all thought and effort.” The psalmist says Teach me your way, O Lord, and I will walk in your truth … (Psalm 86:11) Jesus not only gives us direction but He walks with us and guides us. Jesus is the revealer of the Father. Moral perfection finds its realization in Him.

Jesus said I AM THE LIFE.

Jesus is the life, “the real and living way” (Moffatt). Eternal life “means literally “life of the age to come” and refers, therefore, to resurrection and heavenly existence in perfect glory and holiness. This life for believers in the Lord Jesus is experienced before heaven is reached. This “eternal life” is, in essence, nothing less than participation in the eternal life of the Living Word, Jesus Christ. It is the life of God in every believer, yet not fully manifest until the resurrection. (Read Philippians 3: 20-21)

                                                                                                                                      -John MacArthur-




-Thomas Kempis-

-All Scriptures passages are taken from the New International Version (NIV)-

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El cuarto de los siete YO SOY

Juan 10:11

                                                          LA MANO CONTRATADA

En Palestina, el pastor tenía la responsabilidad de proteger a las ovejas. Si alguna de las ovejas resultaba herida o muerta, el pastor tenía que probar que no era su culpa. La evidencia “sería un par de huesos de la pata o parte de una oreja de las mandíbulas de un animal salvaje” (The Bible Knowledge Commentary). Se pagó a una mano contratada para cuidar de las ovejas. Cuando las ovejas no estaban en peligro, no tenía ningún problema en cuidar de las ovejas. Pero cuando llegaba el peligro, era más probable que se preocupara por sí mismo que por las ovejas.  El apóstol Juan dice Cuando ve que el lobo se acerca, abandona las ovejas y huye; entonces el lobo ataca al rebaño y lo dispersa. Y ese hombre huye porque, siendo asalariado, no le importan las ovejas. (Juan 10:12-13, NVI)

John MacArthur le da al texto una aplicación espiritual. Él dice: “El asalariado (o mano contratada) representa a los líderes religiosos que cumplen con su deber en los buenos tiempos, pero que nunca muestran cuidado sacrificial por las ovejas en tiempos de peligro”.

Dr.  W. M.  Thomson en The Land and the Book escribe: “He escuchado con intenso interés para … descripciones de (pastores fieles en) peleas francas y desesperadas con … bestias salvajes … para defender (su) rebaño…  El verdadero pastor nunca (duda) en arriesgar, e incluso dar, su vida por sus ovejas. “

Jesús dice YO SOY EL BUEN PASTOR. EL BUEN PASTOR DA SU VIDA POR LAS OVEJAS. (JUAN 10:11, NVI) Somos “las ovejas”. El apóstol Pablo dice Al que no cometió pecado alguno, por nosotros Dios lo trató como pecador, para que en él (Jesús) recibiéramos la justicia (para que podamos llegar a ser en Cristo todo lo que nunca podríamos ser en nosotros mismos, lo que se requiere) de Dios. (2 Corintios 5:21, NVI) Jesús nos ama tanto que creo que está más allá de la comprensión humana. Jesús nos recuerda que Nadie tiene amor más grande que el dar la vida por sus amigos. (Juan 15:13, NVI)



Debemos amarnos unos a otros como Jesús nos ama. Juan dice En esto conocemos lo que es el amor: en que Jesucristo entregó su vida por nosotros. Así también nosotros debemos entregar la vida por nuestros hermanos. (1 Juan 3:16) Nosotros, que nacemos de nuevo, estamos llamados a la misma clase de ofrenda sacrificial unos hacia otros. 

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El quinto de los siete YO SOY

Jesús le dijo a Marta, Yo soy la resurrección y la vida. El que cree en mí vivirá, aunque muera; y todo el que vive y cree en mí no morirá jamás. ¿Crees esto?

(Juan 11:25-26, NVI)

Las hermanas Marta y María habían enviado un mensaje a Jesús de que su hermano Lázaro estaba enfermo. Querían que Jesús viniera inmediatamente y sanara a su hermano. La Biblia dice que cuando Jesús llegó a la casa de Marta y María Lázaro ya había estado muerto por cuatro días. Marta le dijo a Jesús: si hubieras estado aquí, mi hermano no habría muerto.

(Juan 11:21, NVI) Para consolarla, Jesús dijo: Tu hermano resucitará (Juan 11:23, NVI).  Marta no tenía un entendimiento completo de lo que Jesús quería decir. La Biblia dice, Jesús fue a la tumba de Lázaro y gritó con todas sus fuerzas: – !Lázaro, sal fuera!  El muerto salió …  (Juan 11:43, NVI).   

Tarde o temprano cada uno de nosotros morirá físicamente. ¡Pero hay buenas noticias! JESÚS ES EL AUTOR DE LA RESURRECCIÓN. SÓLO ÉL PUEDE RESUCITAR A LOS QUE ESTÁN FÍSICAMENTE MUERTOS.

¿Qué quiso decir Jesús cuando le dijo a Marta: El que cree en mí vivirá, aunque muera.  Estaba pensando en la muerte del pecado. Incluso en el mundo en el que vivimos hoy, el reinado del Mesías ya ha comenzado. Jesús le preguntó a Marta: ¿Crees esto? (Juan 11:26b, NVI) Y tú, ¿lo crees?

El apóstol Pablo dice: … En cuanto a ti, estabas muerto en tu …  pecados, que solías vivir cuando seguiste los caminos de este mundo …  por su gran amor por nosotros, Diosque es rico en misericordia, (nos hace vivos espiritualmente) …  (Lee Efesios 2:1 y 4, NVI)

William Barclay nos cuenta la historia de un hombre cuyo nombre era Tokichi. Fue un asesino de hombres, mujeres y niños. Cualquiera que se interpusiera en su camino fue eliminado sin  lástima. Estaba en prisión esperando la muerte. Algunas mujeres trataron de hablar con él a través de los barrotes. Solo los miró, como si fuera un animal enjaulado y salvaje. Finalmente, abandonaron el intento de hablar con él; pero le dieron una Biblia. Comenzó a leerlo, y habiendo comenzado, Tokichi no pudo parar. Llegó a las palabras que Jesús dijo en la Cruz: Padre, perdónalos, porque no saben lo que hacen.  Esas palabras lo rompieron.  “Me detuve” dijo. “Me apuñalaron en el corazón como si me hubiera atravesado un clavo de cinco pulgadas.   ¿Debo llamarlo el amor de Cristo? ¿Debo llamarlo Su compasión? No sé cómo llamarlo. Solo sé que creí, y mi dureza de corazón cambió. ” Más tarde, cuando el carcelero vino a llevar al hombre condenado al patíbulo, el carcelero encontró a un hombre sonriente y radiante. El asesino había nacido de nuevo. Literalmente, Cristo trajo a Tokichi a la vida.


EL CORAZÓN ENDURECIDO DE UN HOMBRE PUEDE SER CAMBIADO POR EL AMOR DE DIOS.              Dirección de correo  electrónico: walnutave1234@comcast.net