This beautiful valley of Jezreel/Megiddo will never see an end-time battle
Last-edit: March 20 2018
In defence of the sidelined God Jehovah, Creator of the Universe and Father of Humanity
The other sheep – Who are they?
Wrote this to HQ in 2005 while still a Witness clinging to their beliefs, but questioning much.
A JW since January 1958, I had developed a profound love for the Word of Jehovah over the many years of my association with them, as a consequence of spending more time with God via his word, via a schedule of reading through the entire Bible annually over a few years.
An instruction talk assignment on November the 7th 2003 dealing with John chapters 10 & 11 brought verse 16 of chapter 10 once again into focus.
Pondering over these and surrounding verses, I wondered how to teach someone the difference between those destined to be part of the Kingdom in the heavens and those on earth to be ruled by it, which is the JW perspective.
Here is that verse in John 10:
16 “And I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; those also I must bring, and they will listen to my voice, and they will become one flock, one shepherd. . .
To be able to answer the question who these other sheep are, one would first need a clear understanding who or what comprises this fold.
NWT cross-references at other sheep takes one to Rev 7:9*, the one from this fold to Luke 12:32*, which doctrine they had arrived at in the 1930s when many more attended meetings than were of the anointed and they didn't know what to do with them.
* Great Crowd
* Little Flock
The New American Standard Bible on the other hand takes the reader/student from other
sheep quite correctly to Isaiah 56:8 and from will become one flock to John 11:52;
Ephesians 2:13-18; 1 Peter 2:25 (not quite accurate, since Peter was an Apostle to the Jews, and the straying sheep were Jews –Isaiah 53:6)
OK, so who or what is this fold?
Why not allow Jesus to have the final say?:
The purpose for Jesus' birth was, as he himself said: (John 18:37) . . .For this I have been born, and for this I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth.. . .
one of the initial truths being:
. . .“I was not sent forth to any but to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. .
Wow! just look at the cross-reference from Matthew 15:24:
Like sheep we have all of us wandered about; it was each one to his own way that
we have turned; and Jehovah himself has caused the error of us all to meet up with
This was also echoed by the command Jesus gave to his disciples:
but, instead, go continually to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. (Matthew 10:6)
The apostle Peter also had these strayed Israelite sheep in mind in connection with
a different theme, but with the cross-reference at astray also pointing to Isaiah
53:6– when he said in
1 Peter 2:21-25:
21 for to this ye were called, because Christ also did suffer for you, leaving to you an example, that ye may follow his steps, 22 who did not commit sin, nor was guile found in his mouth, 23 who being reviled—was not reviling again, suffering—was not threatening, and was committing himself to Him who is judging righteously, 24 who our sins himself did bear in his body, upon the tree, that to the sins having died, to the righteousness we may live; by whose stripes ye were healed, 25 for ye were as sheep going astray, but ye turned back now to the shepherd and overseer of your souls*.
* Jehovah, because the Christ never had them in the first place for them to return to him.
Note that it was Israel that was addressed in Isaiah 53:6 with words like Zion and Jerusalem –not mankind (see chapters 51&52)
In John 10 &11, Jesus the sheep, was right in amongò this fold of lost sheep of the House of Israel he belonged to, while certainly not lost on a personal level, since he had not inherited their collective transgressions against the Law from a male of that guilty nation.
Within that context He said that there were yet others to be gathered into the oneness of that same Israel fold he was in.
It is this fold that was the theme of Jehovah's inspired words to Ca´ia·phas, as reported by the Apostle John:
(John 11:49-52) 49 But a certain one of them, Ca´ia·phas, who was high priest that year, said to them: “you do not know anything at all, 50 and you do not reason out that it is to your benefit for one man to die in behalf of the people and not for the whole nation to be destroyed.” 51 This, though, he did not say of his own originality; but because he was high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus was destined to die for the nation, 52 and not for the nation only, but in order that the children of God who are scattered about he might also gather together in one * . .
* Yes it is only at this point that the NWT refers the reader to Ephesians 2:14, because they quite rightly see the anointed little flock of separated ones or saints correctly as that amalgam drawn from among all tribes of the earth.
Yet they sadly and unrighteously do not do so at other sheep in John 10:16, as do the NASB and the NKJV, which in turn direct the reader to:
Isaiah 56:8: 8 The utterance of the Sovereign Lord Jehovah, who is collecting together the dispersed ones of Israel, is: “I shall collect together to him others besides those already collected together of his.”
Speaking to the Jews the apostle Paul said:
(Acts 13:46) And so, talking with boldness, Paul and Bar´na·bas said: “It was necessary for the word of God to be spoken first to you. Since you are thrusting it away from you and do not judge yourselves worthy of everlasting life, look! we turn to the nations.
(It would be wise to read Acts 13:16-48)
and with reference to Jesus coming exclusively to the Jews:
(Romans 15:8) For I say that Christ actually became a minister of those who are circumcised in behalf of God’s truthfulness, so as to verify the promises He made to their forefathers,
Currently not of the anointed, I am certainly not among those who were subsequently gathered to the original lost sheep of Israel after the end of that 70th week of Daniel 9. I am therefore not of those other sheep.
If the seeker of wisdom and truth were to look carefully enough, even the sheep of
Matthew 25:31-33 are only of the anointed, since they will inherit the kingdom prepared for them from the founding of the world: “Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who have been blessed by my Father, inherit* the kingdom* prepared for you from the founding of the world* (of Israel- Strong's 2889 –1 Government 2 Decoration Adornment). (Matthew 25:34)
* Exodus 19:3-8
* (Romans 8:17) 17 If, then, we are children, we are also heirs: heirs indeed of God, but joint heirs with Christ, provided we suffer together that we may also be glorified together.
* (1 Thessalonians 2:12) to the end that you should go on walking worthily of God who is calling you to his kingdom and glory.
* (Revelation 5:10) and you made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God, and they are to rule as kings over the earth.
But wait there's more:
Sheep in the Bible always refers to individual members of the flock of Jacob, Jehovah's inheritance; except, of course, when used as part of normal Israelite diet.
Matthew 25:21-46 is all about the Christ sorting out the final complement of kings and priests in the heavenly Kingdom when the throne he ascended after his resurrection to rule amid his enemies over the anointed Israel of God on earth assumes its intended glory at the birth of the heavenly kingdom when he gathers all the chosen sheep of multiethnic Israel.
This also terminates the great tribulation upon fleshly Israel. –Matthew 24:29-31
The goats simply miss out for lack of cooperation and will nonetheless receive the same opportunity of indefinite life on earth open to all human beings past, present and future.
Everlasting life will only ever be the prerogative of the heavenly little flock ruling in heaven as kings and priests.
Humans will NEVER attain to everlasting life, nor can they possess it as a default condition, since they need to, in the words of the master: Eat to stay alive before they can ever comply with any of Jehovah's wishes: Matthew and Luke 4:4: And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.
In volume V of his Studies in the Scriptures, Charles Taze Russell coined a phrase that really explains human destiny: Lasting Life, which lasts as long as their cooperative submission.
Now that was easy, wasn't it?
OK now, back to the original Other Sheep question: who are they?
Those of the non Israelite peoples who have become an integral part of that original Israel first commissioned in Exodus 19:3-8 for the privilege of becoming the Heavenly Kingdom that have the assignment to undo the damage caused by Adam's original unyielding refusal to cooperate with Jehovah, to fulfil His purpose for the earth and completely vindicate His name.
The salvation for the Gentiles is only in this context and has no universal meaning, since humanity, of whatever ethnic origin, IS NOT UNDER SIN and condemned by Jehovah.
End of this sheep issue. More sheep matters elsewhere
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