The sheep and the fold

The sheep and the fold

Jesus the Good Shepherd.

(The Gospel History, Section 81)

This parable spake Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which he spake unto them.

Jesus therefore said unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and go out, and shall find pasture. The thief cometh not, but that he may steal, and kill, and destroy: I came that they may have life, and may have it abundantly.

The sheep and the fold

(The Saviour of the World, Vol V Book V Poem LIX)

The Good Shepherd by Frederick Shields

Who be the sheep, say ye, and what the fold,

And what the door by which they enter in?

Where be those thieves and robbers overbold

Would break in by offence and ruthless sin?

Give ear and ye shall understand the tale,
And how the Shepherd shall at last prevail.

The sheep, they are My people; all who hear

My voice and follow,—not Israel alone;

I gather these, and close them in from fear

By the fence which is My Church; and every stone

In the fence is tried and fitted; at the gate,
Is faithful porter set to watch and wait.

Long, long ago, I folded these My sheep;

But heedless watchers hungry wolves let in,

Ravening to slay the flock which none did keep;

Now am I come their rescue to begin:

The door am I through which My sheep shall go;
Their shepherd, too, who leads them to and fro.

I know My sheep; though they be silly, weak,

Yet not to other voices lend they ear

Of thieves and robbers rude; though they be meek,

These hear they not nor suffer to draw near;

But when their Shepherd calls, with answering bleat—
They haste them to lie down about His feet.

I am the door; who enters in by Me

Is welcomed, cherished, guarded from all ill;

Would he go forth to taste the pastures free

Of knowledge, poems, pictures, at his will?

He goes and comes unhindered; everywhere,
He finds green pastures in his Shepherd’s care.

But they who be not shepherds do not so;

They steal the pasture, kill the helpless sheep;

Like Jeshurun, they fat and thriving grow,

They kick and hurt the flock they’re set to keep:

And from strange pastures bring they poisonous weeds
Of doctrine, precept,—grown in other meads.

But I am the Good Shepherd; in Mine arm

The little tender lambs I shield from cold;

The feeble silly sheep keep safe from harm;

Retrieve those wanderers who have waxed too bold;

Ask ye what sustenance I to them supply?
Life, and more life, and life abundantly.

St. John x. 6-10.
Deuteronomy xxxii. 15.

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