CHRIST THE GOOD SHEPHERD
“I am the Good Shepherd, and know My sheep, and am known of Mine.” — Joh_10:14.
GOD DOES not mean merely benevolent and kind, but genuine and true. It is contrasted with the robber and the hireling. Up to a certain point the latter may do his work creditably. He will not desert the flock for trifling considerations; he will earn his pay! But when it comes to the supreme test of sacrificing his life, the hireling breaks down and leaves his flock to the peril of the wild beast. There are such shepherds who have taken up the pastoral office as a livelihood.
How different is our Lord—the Good Shepherd—who gave His life for the sheep. Why did He love us so? It will always be a mystery! He seeks those who belong to His fold, but have wandered off into the dark paths of sin. Jesus goes after the one which is lost until He finds it! That is the way of the Chief Shepherd.
The R.V. rendering brings out the intimate knowledge of Christ of His flock: “I know Mine own, and Mine own know Me; even as the Father knows Me, and I know the Father.” None knoweth the Father save the Son, and none the Son save the Father. But in this same intimacy and certainty the Lord Jesus knows each of us. He knows our down-sitting and our uprising; our motives, sometimes misunderstood; the anxieties which overcast our joys; our fears and hopes. He assuages, as no stranger, can, our heart’s bitterness. It is good to be known thus, for we need enter into no laboured explanation of ourselves.
Christ seeks those who do not belong to a fold (Joh_10:16). Probably there will always be many folds, for by the constitution of their minds men are ever disposed to view Truth from different angles. Some do not see this, and hold that if we do not believe just as they do, we have no right to assume that we belong to the flock. They forget that there may be many folds, yet one flock (R.V.). Whatever may be your special fold, the one great question to answer is: Do you hear and obey the Shepherd’s voice? If so, you certainly belong to the one flock, and no one shall snatch you out of the Shepherd’s hand (Joh_10:27-28, R.V.).
O Lamb of God! Who art in the midst of the Throne, but wilt be our Good Shepherd and tread the rough pathway of this world with each trembling heart. May we be abundantly satisfied with Thy provision and follow in Thy footsteps. AMEN.