Can we boldly proclaim as Peter does, “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved” (NIV)? This preferential claim automatically sets us at odds with believers of other religions and even those who are nonbelieving. For the dutiful Christian, who is attempting to build bridges instead of burn them, this statement of belief causes internal tension. But if we take a closer look at Peter’s statement and its context, we begin to understand his argument for Jesus as the new covenant.

Peter is reiterating what he previously preached to the Israelite people, “Moses said, ‘The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people; you must listen to everything he tells you. Anyone who does not listen to him will be completely cut off from his people’” (Acts 3:22-23, NIV). Peter is proclaiming Jesus as this emerging prophet and messianic figure. Thus, Peter’s claim that salvation is found only in the name of Jesus rings true for him and the other apostles based upon the Mosaic prophecy. Today, most Christians know that the name of Jesus equates to salvation, based on the good shepherd’s promise to receive those who are willing to listen to his voice for guidance and direction. (See John 10:16.)

We can be confident that the good shepherd is calling out to our neighbors and the strangers among us. We can also remain confident in our heart of hearts that Jesus is using us, his sheep, as obedient witnesses of our good shepherd. Knowing that salvation is found in no one else, we can be free to share with others how Christ has transformed our lives. Maybe someone in the crowd is listening for the good shepherd’s voice.

Jesus, salvation is found in you. May I be worthy of this claim. Amen.

Pray the Scriptures Using Audio Lectio
Read John 10:11-18

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Lectionary Week
April 19–25, 2021
Scripture Overview

This week’s readings open with a confrontation in Acts between Peter and John and some of the religious leaders. Peter speaks in harsh terms to the leaders, stating that they had killed Jesus; yet by the power of Jesus’ name, a man who could not walk has been healed. By that same name spiritual healing happens as well. The other three passages employ the metaphor of the Good Shepherd. “The Lord is my shepherd,” the psalmist declares, and the shepherd cares for all our needs. In John’s Gospel, Jesus declares that he is the Good Shepherd who lays down his life for his sheep. First John repeats this imagery. Jesus proved his love when he lay down his life for us. If we truly love one another, we also ought to sacrifice in tangible ways

Questions and Suggestions for Reflection

Read Acts 4:5-12. When have you gotten into difficulty for exercising your Christian faith and values? If never, why not?
Read Psalm 23. What is your first memory of hearing or reading this psalm? Has it had a significant role in your life of faith? If so, what has its role been?
Read 1 John 3:16-24. How do your actions reflect your love for God and for your fellow children of God?
Read John 10:11-18. What “wolves” have you faced in your life? How have you experienced the presence of the Good Shepherd with you as you faced these threats?

Respond by posting a prayer.

I join many of those who will pray for you as you seek to discern what you are called to be at this moment. May God grant you the courage to fulfill that calling. May we all open our eyes and see the misery, open our ears and hear the cries of God’s people, and, like God through the Lord Jesus Christ, be incarnate amongst them.” 

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