READ : John 10:1-6, 11-15
I am the good shepherd. (vv. 11, 14)
Those who know sheep describe an animal with limited intelligence, timid but stubborn,
easily frightened, given to wandering, and totally unable to defend itself.
The Bible likens us to sheep and Jesus to the shepherd. Our shepherd has a relationship
with his sheep. He knows us and calls us by name (vv. 3, 14). We may be troublesome and
error-prone, but as his sheep we know his voice and follow him (vv. 3-5).
A good shepherd cares for his sheep. Jesus is the good shepherd. He guides, protects,
and provides for his sheep an abundant life (v. 10). Some see this as a promise of an
abundance of “things.” Not so! Kent Hughes writes, “Money can buy many `things’—it
can even buy a pasture, but it cannot buy satisfaction.”
All this shepherd does for his sheep comes from the heart he has for them. Four times
Jesus says, “I lay down my life for the sheep” (vv. 11, 15, 17, 18). His is a sacrificial
love. He willingly dies for his sheep because, unlike the hired hand, he owns them. He
gives his life to save the sheep because they belong to him.
Jesus says, “I am the good shepherd.” Is he yours? Why would sheep not follow this
O Lord, stir our hearts to follow our Good Shepherd today.