If you’ve been reading your Bible for any time at all, you’ve certainly encountered some of the incredible names of Jesus. He’s known as the Great High Priest in Hebrews 4. In references to the Christmas story, He’s called the Messiah and Immanuel. Jesus is also repeatedly called the Lamb of God. But there’s one title of Christ that has stood out recently to morning show co-host Mandy Bowman – the Good Shepherd.
THE NEED FOR A SHEPHERD
There’s something you need to know when it comes to understanding Jesus as the Good Shepherd that He is. You need to understand that sheep are dumb. And it’s not exactly a compliment when God calls us sheep.
God doesn’t call us that because we’re cute and fluffy. It’s because even though we are greatly loved, we’re embarrassingly dumb. Sheep are so painfully stupid that they’ll graze themselves right off the edge of a cliff. That comparison totally makes sense when we understand the danger and delusion of our own sin. Sheep’s stupidity also points to their neediness. They desperately need a shepherd, someone to watch out for them. Thankfully, Jesus steps up as that Shepherd.
3 BENEFITS OF OUR GOOD SHEPHERD
In John 10:1-18, Jesus goes into detail about his role as this Shepherd. His faithful fulfillment of that position means plenty of great things for his sheep. When we dig into the cultural context of Jesus’ explanation, we see the care He exhibits. Check out these 3 benefits of the Good Shepherd.
HE KNOWS YOU BY NAME
In the ancient Middle East, shepherds would give each sheep a name and each individual sheep would respond when it was called. Jesus knows each of His sheep and they know Him. He knows you, too. If you’re His sheep, He wants to guide you and communicate with you, to have a relationship with you.
HE IS YOUR GATE
At night, the sheep were often gathered into caves, sheds, or open areas surrounded by walls. The shepherd would sleep across the doorway to protect the sheep. Jesus serves as the only way to salvation. He alone allows sheep into safe places of protection. If you are a follower of Jesus, He is your eternal safety and security.
HE LAYS DOWN HIS LIFE FOR YOU
A hired hand tends the sheep for money, while the shepherd does it out of love. The shepherd owns the sheep and is completely devoted to them. Jesus is not merely doing a job out of duty. He loves you and laid down His very life for you.
DO YOU KNOW THE GOOD SHEPHERD?
Thanks be to God, that Good Shepherd takes care of us if we choose to believe in Him. Jesus is a Shepherd who’s strong and brave enough to save, giving His own life for us. Yet He’s also tender enough to care kindly for the fragile dummies that make up His flock.
If you’re one of His sheep today, rest in the fact that your Shepherd cares for you. If you’re not a believer, we invite you to learn more here.
Did you learn something new today about Jesus as the Good Shepherd? Let us know in the comments!