August 4th 2009

Do We Know The Good Shepherd?  He Knows Us!

“I am the Good Shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me.”
John 10:14 (NIV)

When Jesus says, “I am the Good Shepherd,” it is worth thinking about what shepherds actually do. All Christians know Psalm 23, but do we understand how this refers to us?

There is a working relationship between a shepherd and his sheep, and if the Lord is my Shepherd, there should be a working relationship between God and me. The Bible likens people to sheep because we have some of the same characteristics as sheep. We need food and water. We wander about getting lost. We have petty irritations and rivalries. We need endless care and attention. Sheep can’t save themselves, and neither can we save ourselves.

First of all, the shepherd looks after the sheep and God looks after us, as the parable of the lost sheep shows (Luke 15:4-5). Jesus came to earth to search for lost people and save them (John 10:11), and we were all lost. We have strayed away into things we shouldn’t have and places where we shouldn’t be.

Sheep need food and water, and God provides shepherds to lead them to these. In the same way, we need spiritual food and water, and God provides pastors to lead us to it. They show us where it is and it’s up to us to take it in.

Shepherds are always there, and guard their sheep and protect them from all kinds of irritations and harm. David was a shepherd and he fought and killed a lion and a bear to protect his sheep. Satan roams about like a lion and we have the Good Shepherd to protect us.

When the Chief Shepherd appears will you receive a crown and dwell in His house forever? (1 Peter 5:4, Psalm 23:6)

Father, thank you so much for the analogy of the Good Shepherd and the sheep, which helps us to understand how much you care for us and the comfort it brings to know you are always there for us, and you want us to be with you forever.

Study by Jill Newman

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