Do You Know Any Shepherds?

 lightstock_321046_download_medium_byrene_haney_

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” John 10:11

 Most of us are not familiar with shepherds.  I bet we would have a hard time naming three off the top of your head.  Just to test this theory name three now, and Jesus does not count (his profession was a carpenter).

To help us better define what a shepherd is we will use as our primary text Psalm 23 written by a famous shepherd, David. We hear the scriptures describe the Lord as a shepherd, and Jesus as the shepherd of the sheep, but we don’t resonate with that. However, Jesus provides some context for his definition of the role the Good Shepherd plays in the life of his flock of believers.  The Shepherd heals and restores the broken.  You see that demonstrated in John 9 when Jesus heals the man born blind.  Jesus also heals the sick, brings back the lost and provides for the needs of the sheep, i.e. the feeding of the 4,000 and 5,000.

Over the next several weeks we will look at a few aspects of how King David defines the Good Shepherd.  I think it will help you better understand Jesus’ identification of being the Good Shepherd.

The Lord is my shepherd; Psalm 23:1a

 The shepherd is the only real line of defense the sheep have.  Sheep are like babies.  They are entirely dependent on the goodness and care of the shepherd.  Jesus points to this in John 10, 11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 He who is a hired hand and not a shepherd, who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. 13 He flees because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.” The sheep have no way to protect themselves when the wolf comes.  If the one protecting the sheep abandons them, they are toast.  All the sheep can do is run.

 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” John 10:11

 

Most of us are not familiar with shepherds.  I bet we would have a hard time naming three off the top of your head.  Just to test this theory name three now, and Jesus does not count (his profession was a carpenter).

 

To help us better define what a shepherd is we will use as our primary text Psalm 23 written by a famous shepherd, David. We hear the scriptures describe the Lord as a shepherd, and Jesus as the shepherd of the sheep, but we don’t resonate with that. However, Jesus provides some context for his definition of the role the Good Shepherd plays in the life of his flock of believers.  The Shepherd heals and restores the broken.  You see that demonstrated in John 9 when Jesus heals the man born blind.  Jesus also heals the sick, brings back the lost and provides for the needs of the sheep, i.e. the feeding of the 4,000 and 5,000.

 

Over the next several weeks we will look at a few aspects of how King David defines the Good Shepherd.  I think it will help you better understand Jesus’ identification of being the Good Shepherd.

 

The Lord is my shepherd;

 

The shepherd is the only real line of defense the sheep have.  Sheep are like babies.  They are entirely dependent on the goodness and care of the shepherd.  Jesus points to this in John 10, 11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 He who is a hired hand and not a shepherd, who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. 13 He flees because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.” The sheep have no way to protect themselves when the wolf comes.  If the one protecting the sheep abandons them, they are toast.  All the sheep can do is run.  The Good Shepherd provides protection for the sheep in the midst of all dangers, with Jesus in charge there is no need for any other security.

 

I shall not want.

 

Madonna, the singer not the Mother of our Lord, once had a song called, “Living in a Material World.”  And that title is so telling.  We do live in a very materialistic society.  To counter that Jesus makes a bold claim, “I am the Good Shepherd, I care for the sheep.” Translation “You shall not want.” Notice Jesus did not say you shall not desire.  Jesus never promises to satisfy all my desires, and that is a good thing.  I have lots of desires.  I love shoes.  That drives my wife crazy.  I have shoes for every mood I am in. Lately, I have given away most of them some only worn three or four times.

 

Best Buy is always a bad idea for me, because I love technology.  I saw this brand-new television that curves and is in 3D with surround sound speakers so you can feel like you are in the movie theater. And on top of it when you watch sports on it you can see the sweat drop off the players.  Do I desire that? You bet, does Jesus promise me I will get that, No!  Jesus says you shall not want, in other words, the Good Shepherd promises to provide me with the basics in life, food, drink, tranquility, to rescue me when I am lost, give me freedom from fear and death.  Jesus never promises to grant all my desires, if he did I would need a bigger barn to store all those things.  Jesus gives me what I need so that I am not in want.  He knows me.  He understands my situation. I can put my trust in him for the things I need today.  Jesus reminds us that in Matthew 6, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?”

 

Come back next Thursday as we continue our walk through Psalm 23.

 

I shall not want. Psalm 23:1b

 Madonna, the singer not the Mother of our Lord, once had a song called, “Living in a Material World.”  And that title is so telling.  We do live in a very materialistic society.  To counter that Jesus makes a bold claim, “I am the Good Shepherd, I care for the sheep.” Translation “You shall not want.” Notice Jesus did not say you shall not desire.  Jesus never promises to satisfy all my desires, and that is a good thing.  I have lots of desires.  I love shoes.  That drives my wife crazy.  I have shoes for every mood I am in. Lately, I have given away most of them some only worn three or four times.

Best Buy is always a bad idea for me because I love technology.  I saw this brand-new television that curves and is in 3D with surround sound speakers so you can feel like you are in the movie theater. And on top of it when you watch sports on you can see the sweat drop off the players.  Do I desire that? You bet, does Jesus promise me I will get that, No!  Jesus says you shall not want, in other words, the Good Shepherd promises to provide me with the basics in life, food, drink, tranquility, to rescue me when I am lost, give me freedom from fear and death.  Jesus never promises to grant all my desires, if he did I would need a bigger barn to store all those things.  Jesus gives me what I need so that I am not in want.  He knows me.  He understands my situation. I can put my trust in him for the things I need today.  Jesus reminds us that in Matthew 6, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?”

 

Read more as we continue our walk through Psalm 23.
https://revheadpin.org/2017/05/25/still-waters-runs-deep

Advertisements

6 Comments

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s