John 10:11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.
John 10:14-15 I am the good shepherd. I know my sheep and my sheep know me - just as the Father knows me and I know the Father - and I lay down my life for the sheep.
John I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd.
Jesus says, “I am the good shepherd.” We like the comforting image of Jesus as the good shepherd. But do we realize this means we are the sheep? We are prone to wander like sheep with little sense; we follow the whims of the moment. We may even follow a wrong leader, a false teacher. Sheep are easily led astray.
Woodward Kroll says, “We can’t recognize Jesus as the Good Shepherd unless we get to the place where we begin to understand that we are sheep.” We won’t recognize our need until we face our lost-ness and our need for him.
We say the 23rd Psalm – The Lord is my Shepherd – but focus on the word Shepherd. Is he really our Lord? This is not optional. Kroll says, “Lots of people want to make the Shepherd part primary and the Lord part optional. But wanting to have a Shepherd who isn’t Lord, only shows that we don’t understand the meaning of Shepherd and Lord.”
The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep, for us. This is awesome and sobering.
Jesus also says (in John ) that he has other sheep in another pen. These are the gentiles he’s talking about – that’s us! Isn’t that awesome? He says “I must bring them also and they will listen to my voice and there will be one flock and one shepherd.” This surprised me as Jesus is talking to the Jews. He knows about us even then and he knows he will die for us.
We thank you that you are our Lord and Savior and that you are the Good Shepherd who died for us. Help us truly grasp this in a new and deeper way. We are like sheep and we need you.
Note to readers: See I Am the Gate post which is connected in Scripture to I Am the Good Shepherd.