My shepherd. What a wonderful and intimate picture of our Lord. Psalm 23 is probably the most beloved and quoted psalm in the Scriptures. In those six verses there are 28 personal pronouns that are used. It speaks of God’s intimacy with us.
We find the imagery of sheep and shepherd all throughout the Scriptures. The perfect sacrifice was an unblemished lamb whose blood was spread on the altar for Israel’s sins. When John first saw Jesus coming towards him he exclaimed: “Behold the Lamb of God Who takes away the sins of the world.” John 1:29
God refers to Himself in Ezekiel 34 as the One who rescues the sheep. In Ezekiel 34: 16, 17 God says, “I Myself will be the Shepherd of My sheep, and I Myself will make them lie down, declares the Lord. I will seek the lost, and I will bring back the strayed, and I will bind up the injured, and I will strengthen the weak, and the fat and the strong I will destroy.”
In John 10, Jesus refers to Himself as the Good Shepherd. In verse 11 He declares, “I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” He repeats this claim in verse 14. “I am the Good Shepherd. I know my own and my own know Me…”
The author of Hebrews refers to Christ as the Great Shepherd: “Now may the God of peace who brought again up from the dead our Lord Jesus, the Great Shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ to Whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.” (Hebrew 13:20) Peter also refers to Christ as the Chief Shepherd (I Peter 5:4).
So what does our Good Shepherd do? He meets our needs. He watches over us. He brings us up from the pit. He guides us in the right paths. He protects us and walks alongside of us. He pursues us with His goodness and mercy. He gives us a new name-Christian. He not only gives me a new name, He knows my name. I have all the privileges, all the blessings, and all the riches of His grace. A wonderful inheritance is laid up for me.
This Great and Chief Shepherd has watched over this ministry for almost 40 years. I am so grateful for you who have labored with me and given generously of your time, resources, wisdom and prayers. It truly evokes praise and worship for all God has done!