Jesus is comparing His intimate relationship with God the Father and His close fellowship with His sheep. When Jesus said that He “knows” His sheep it’s so much more than just mentally grasping who they are…It’s a deep personal understanding and commitment of His Will to love and care for His flock…and of willingly laying down His life for their sake. In other words, to say that Jesus knows His sheep in this way refers to God’s gracious redemptive work through His only Son. But it also says that, “My sheep know Me.” So how do we go about this? In Exodus 33:12, Moses replied to God, “You have said, I know you by name and You have found favor with me. If You are pleased with me, teach me Your Ways so I may know You and continue to find favor with You.” The only way to “know” God is through His Word & prayer. For it’s only by this we can truly gain knowledge, intimate fellowship, and personal experience about His ultimate plan & purpose for our lives.