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Who are other sheep?

Submitted: 7/15/2007
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Question: John 10:16 says, 'And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.' Who are the 'other sheep' Jesus spoke of in this verse?

Answer: In John 10 Jesus was speaking to His Jewish followers. The 'other sheep' would be the Gentiles (non-Jewish people). At the time of Christ there was a great divide between the Jews and the Gentiles. So this was a radical idea that Jesus would bring them together into one sheepfold with one shepherd. But this began to happen in Acts 10 when a Roman family was born again.

Writing to the Gentile believers in Ephesus, Paul explained, 'Therefore remember that you, once Gentiles in the flesh—who are called Uncircumcision by what is called the Circumcision made in the flesh by hands—12 that at that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. 14 For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, 15 having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace, 16 and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity' (Ephesians 2:11-16). Today there is 'neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus' (Galatians 3:28).