Knowing and Known

Journal Entry // April 22, 2021

I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me,

John 10:14 ESV

There are a lot of interesting phrases and insight that Jesus gives in this section of the Gospel, but the one that stood out to me this morning was his knowing of his sheep. This is not a general knowing like he states elsewhere about knowing what’s in the heart of man. This is a deep intimate knowledge of a person. And it’s reciprocal. We know Jesus deeply as we follow him and obey our good shepherd.

Jesus says earlier that he knows us by name. That he knows me by name. His intimacy with his sheep is personal. This is not some distant overseer that cares not for his responsibility. This is a personal relationship between the shepherd and the sheep. There is definitely a connection between the shepherd and the flock as a whole, but there is something more. Something far deeper and intimate.

Immediately after this he compares this knowing of one another to the way he and the Father know one another. This doesn’t seem quite possible does it. Jesus and the Father are one; united in eternity. Yet, Jesus tells us that we too have this knowing of one another. There is a level of deep unfathomable intimacy and understanding between our Savior and ourselves.

I don’t feel this all the time and it worries me. It is far too easy to lose sight of this singular exceptional truth of spiritual intimacy. I want to vary the level of intimacy based on my obedience and these feelings that dominate me at times. But this is not the essence of knowing one another. The relationship is true whether I feel it or not. Just as the moon is always there in orbit around the Earth whether it is reflecting the sun and shining bright in the night sky or whether it is not reflecting at all and appears absent at times. The truth is that the moon is exactly where it always has been. And so is our intimacy with Christ.

This one truth should undergird and strengthen my heart and soul for it is key to faithfulness. No matter the circumstances nor feelings nor obedience, Jesus knows me and I know him. Do I want to be a man after God’s own heart? This is the path. Knowing Jesus is the way… The only way.

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