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15just as the Father knows me and I know the Father. And I lay down my life for the sheep.

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15-18. As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father—What claim to absolute equality with the Father could exceed this? (See on Mt 11:27).

and I lay down my life for the sheep—How sublime this, immediately following the lofty claim of the preceding clause! It is the riches and the poverty of "the Word made flesh"—one glorious Person reaching at once up to the Throne and down even to the dust of death, "that we might live through Him." A candid interpretation of the words, "for the sheep," ought to go far to establish the special relation of the vicarious death of Christ to the Church.




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