What does John 10:26 mean?
ESV: but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep.
NIV: but you do not believe because you are not my sheep.
NASB: But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep.
CSB: But you don't believe because you are not of my sheep.
NLT: But you don’t believe me because you are not my sheep.
KJV: But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you.
Verse Commentary:
Jesus' religious critics have disputed His teaching and miracles, going so far as to attribute His works to Satan (Mark 3:22). As Jesus has stated, their stubbornness is exactly that: a willful refusal to follow truth (John 5:39–40). They cannot understand because they don't want to understand (John 7:17). Now, these same religious leaders—collectively referred to in John's gospel as "the Jews"—are daring Jesus to repeat his claims. They've surrounded Him in a part of the Temple which offers no escape route (John 10:24), seem already prepared for violence (John 10:31), and have challenged Him to say something everyone knows they don't want to hear.

Here, Jesus reiterates a point he made for these men a few months prior: they don't hear His voice because they are not His "sheep" (John 10:1–6). Like sheep, which only recognize the voice of their particular master, these men are practically deaf to the voice of God. As pointed out before, these men are ultimately proving that their master is the Devil (John 8:42–47). Jesus' voice is God's voice (John 10:30); if you don't hear the voice of God, it means you're not part of His "flock."

All the evidence and reason in the world won't make the slightest difference to someone committed to disbelief.
Verse Context:
John 10:22–42 happens a few months after the controversy described in chapter 9 through the first half of chapter 10. Here, Jesus is cornered, in an overt threat, by the same religious leaders He has been castigating for years. He echoes the metaphors of sheep and shepherd He employed after giving sight to a blind man. Jesus points out that His teachings and miracles are all consistent with predictions of the Messiah, but these men refuse to accept Him. This culminates in another attempt on Jesus' life, which He somehow avoids. This represents the last time Jesus will publicly teach prior to His crucifixion.
Chapter Summary:
This passage continues Jesus' discussion with the religious leaders of Jerusalem, seen in chapter 9. Jesus lays out three separate analogies about His ministry, using the concept of sheep and shepherds. In those statements, Jesus explains why some people refuse to accept Him, declares Himself the only means of salvation, and again predicts His sacrificial death. This leads to controversy. Later, Jesus is cornered by a mob in the temple grounds. They once again try to stone Him as He repeats His divine claims, but He escapes in some way not fully described by the text. After this, Jesus leaves the area and returns to the region where John the Baptist had once preached.
Chapter Context:
Starting in chapter 7, the gospel of John describes Jesus' preaching at the Feast of Booths in Jerusalem. Through chapters 7 and 8, He debates with critics and attempts to explain spiritual truths. On the way out of the city, Jesus gives sight to a man born blind, as shown in chapter 9. That begins an extended debate which continues in this chapter. Jesus gives analogies of His mission using shepherding as a theme. Months later, He repeats those ideas when cornered by an aggressive mob in the temple. This sets the stage for His grandest miracle, the raising of Lazarus, seen in chapter 11.
Book Summary:
The gospel of John was written by the disciple John, decades later than the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke. The author assumes that a reader is already familiar with the content of these other works. So, John presents a different perspective, with a greater emphasis on meaning. John uses seven miracles—which he calls “signs”—in order to prove that Jesus is, in fact, God incarnate. Some of the most well-known verses in all of the Bible are found here. None is more famous than the one-sentence summary of the gospel found in John 3:16.
Accessed 4/18/2024 7:42:39 PM
© Copyright 2002-2024 Got Questions Ministries. All rights reserved.
Text from ESV, NIV, NASB, CSB, NLT, KJV © Copyright respective owners, used by permission.