7 Jesus said again, “I am honestly telling you, I am the gate for the sheep.
8 All who came before me are thieves and bandits, but the sheep didn’t listen to them.
9 I am the gate. If anyone enters by me, he will be rescued and will come in and go out and find pasture.
10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I have come so that they may have life and have it in excess.
Focus on the gate
I was tempted to follow the CSB in verse 10, and not render ὁ κλέπτης as definite. I kept the expression “The thief,” because it contains the definite article, but I can understand why the CSB translators chose to render it “A thief.” Jesus is not talking about Satan here. He had already identified the thieves as false shepherds.
Satan is very real, and his influence in destroying people’s lives should not be underestimated. But the focus of this text is not Satan; it is Jesus. He offers permanent safety, freedom and fulfillment. Our only hope for eternal life is the gate.
Lord, rescue us.