Thieves And Robbers

Q. I have a question about what Jesus said in John 10:8. “All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them.”

On the surface it appears that Jesus is saying that Moses and all the prophets before him are thieves and robbers. I find it hard to believe that he would say that about his fellow prophets.

What is your interpretation on who he is talking about and what reasons is it not Moses and the prophets? Thanks for all the answers you give and may the LORD continue to bless you.

A. Your inclination to reject the notion that Jesus was talking about Moses and the Prophets is correct because they all wrote about Him.

The thieves and robbers were those who claimed to have come to take the “sheep” home but were actually trying to steal them away. They were the false messiahs and other purveyors of false doctrine who taught a different way to salvation.

The extreme doctrine of salvation by works taught by the Pharisees and the allegorical interpretation of Scripture taught by the Sadducees which rejected the very prophecies that Jesus was fulfilling were among the most insidious because they were being promoted by the religious leaders who were supposed to be speaking on God’s behalf. True believers had always rejected these doctrines. Now they could see that only Jesus had the right way.

Sadly these doctrines are still being taught in the Church today. The Pharisees are represented by extremists among religious conservatives who impose all kinds of legalistic restrictions on their followers, while the Sadducees are the liberals who still teach that the prophecies of the end times are allegorical, just as their ancient counterparts did. True believers continue to reject these doctrines. It’s still true that only Jesus has the right way.

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