John 10:7-10 is an interesting passage "Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly." I have read this passage many times but I never noticed that one line, "The sheep did not hear them"
The whole of John chapter 9 is fascinating to me. There is so much in the story of that man that was born blind that Jesus heals by making mud smearing it in his eyes and telling him to go wash. Because Jesus asks him to go and wash instead of healing him right there, this man can't identify Jesus by sight, yet he is convinced he is the LORD because he healed him.
The rift comes when he stands up for Jesus amongst the Leaders of the synagog. They can not intimidate the healed man or shut him up so they do the next best thing. They kick him out of the synagog. That is a much bigger thing than being kicked out of a church in that it eliminated his access not just to fellowship but also redemption.
But Jesus knowing that he was cast out went to find him and then He says, I am the door. Which I take to mean He is the one who can say, "You are in." and "You are out". What a comforting thought but more than that it says whoever came before me are thieves and robbers... BUT... the sheep did not hear them.
I'm thinking of all the out of order things that are done in the name of God. Does that passage say that His sheep just blow off stuff that is out of order and not follow it? Or is it saying that there are filters between His sheep's ears that keep them from hearing a foreign call. Or is it that we come to know the voice of our true master and we are not distracted by the thieves. Does this take practice or is it supernatural?
Knowing just what I have seen of God's protection of me over the years I tend to think that it is a supernatural protection. Sweet!