Jesus Christ is a true and good shepherd

May 23, 2013 1:33 pm
It can be said that the shepherd in Israel represented faithfulness, compassion, guidance and protection. In the scripture, Jesus did not only display the characteristics of a good shepherd, He demonstrated the power of the messiah who would shepherd the people of Israel. A true and faithful shepherd cares for the needs of those he leads by providing all necessary requirements.
Many came to the Jewish people, professing to be their spiritual leaders or rulers and guides. They were self-appointed messiahs for the nation. But they did not come by the way which the Old Testament predicted the messiah would come. They climbed up some other way. They presented themselves to Israel in a manner of their own choosing. These men were not true shepherds, but thieves and robbers. Thieves are those that take what does not belong to them, and robbers are those who use violence in doing so. The Pharisees were considered thieves and robbers.
They sought to rule over the Jews, and yet did everything in their power to hinder them from accepting the true Messiah. They persecuted those who followed Jesus Christ and eventually, they would put Jesus to death. Jesus came to the lost sheep of the house of Israel because He was the true shepherd of the sheep. He entered by the door, that is, He came in exact fulfillment of the Old Testament prophesies concerning the Messiah. He was not a self-appointed saviour, but came in perfect obedience to the will of His Father. He met all the conditions. (John 10:1-18)
The sheep heard the Shepherd’s voice and recognize the voice as that of a true shepherd. Just as literal sheep recognize the voice of their own shepherd, so therefore, there were those among the Jewish people, who recognize the Messiah when He appeared. Again, when the true shepherd brings out His own sheep, He does not drive them away, but leads them. He does not ask them to go anywhere that He Himself has not first gone. He is ever out in front of the sheep as their Saviour, their Guide, and Example. Those who are true sheep of Christ follow Him. They do no become sheep by following example, but by being born again. Then when they are saved, they have a desire to go where He leads.    
Jesus declares Himself as the Good Shepherd whose genuine concern for His sheep is in contrast to the conduct of a hireling, whose interest is self-preservation and money making. The Good Shepherd which is Jesus is the Great Shepherd. He is also the Head and Redeemer of the Church (Ephesians 1:20 – 23). The hireling flees from danger and leaves the sheep prone to death, destruction and division. Many of the sheep are being raised for food or sacrifice. The point to be made of the illustration here is to show the differences between the Good Shepherd who loved and cared for His sheep and the hired labourer; who is only interested in money and what he will get. How do you care for those entrusted to you as pastor, teacher, parent, leader, students, educators, administrators, etc.? Are you like a hireling or like Jesus who demonstrated His love and commitment by laying down His life for us? Also, as sheep, we should know, trust and follow Jesus Christ as the loving Good shepherd in all circumstances.      
However, what is important in this discuss is that by faith, we will enter into abundant life through faith in Jesus Christ that is the door. We should also understand that it is only through Him, that we can find eternal life because Jesus Christ, the True and Good Shepherd gave His life to redeem us back to God.
–    By Jokpeme Joseph Omode

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