Jesus, Our Good Shepherd, The Great I AM

The Good Shepherd

The Good Shepherd

The Passage

John 10:11-18

I am The Good Shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand, since he is not the shepherd and doesn’t own the sheep, leaves them and runs away when he sees a wolf coming. The wolf then snatches and scatters them. This happens because he is a hired hand and doesn’t care about the sheep.

I am the good shepherd. I know my own, and my own know me, just as the Father knows me, and I know the Father. I lay down my life for the sheep. But I have other sheep that are not from this sheep pen; I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. Then there will be one flock, one shepherd. This is why the Father loves me, because I lay down my life so that I may take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down on my own. I have the right to lay it down, and I have the right to take it up again. I have received this command from my Father.”

The Good Shepherd

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I Am Who I Am

There is a scarlet cord that runs through the Old Testament straight into the New Testament and Jesus, the Christ. Christos comes from the Greek meaning “Anointed One” or “Chosen One” and is related to the Hebrew word “Mashiach”, or Messiah. We understand that when these words are used, we are speaking of Jesus. The Gospel of John is filled with analogies from Jesus using “I am …”. These statements were one way that Jesus declared He was indeed the Messiah, the coming King, and Savior of the world. We see in Exodus 3 that God instructed Moses to tell the people that He was “I Am Who I Am”. He is above everything and incomparable to any other. I Am is a declaration of deity.

The Great I AM; The Good SHepherd

It wasn’t until recently that the light came on… The Great I in Exodus who spoke to Moses in a burning bush as the same I Am that Jesus declared Himself to be in the Book of John!

The Good Shepherd vs. The Hireling

The Good shepherd lays down His life.

It was an oxymoron for Jesus to say he was the Good Shepherd. Shepherds were not looked upon as “good.” They were the lowest of the low. They were thieves and robbers. How could the Messiah be a shepherd? But then consider what they knew in history. David was a shepherd-king. He came from the lowest and was exalted to the highest position in Israel. King David received the promise of God that his line would lead to the Messiah. David wrote, “The Lord is my Shepherd”, the one who cares for me, leads, and guides me, heals me, and saves me.

Jesus was not like other shepherds. He did not run away from danger but gave His life to save His sheep. Hirelings, other shepherds, Jesus referred to, were the Sadducees and Pharisees. They didn’t come in through the door by which God had brought His flock into the fold. “The entrance to the Fold had been His free love, His gracious provision, His thoughts of pardoning, His purpose of saving mercy. That was God’s Old Testament door into His Sheepfold.” [Alfred Edersheim, Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah, 1883, page 802-803]

My Own View of the Good Shepherd

I grew up on a dairy farm, no sheep, but the analogy applies. We seldom took a vacation as a family because of the expense. There was more to consider financially than the vacation itself. If we were to leave the farm, we had to hire someone to feed and milk the cows. Invariably, milk production went down and many times we returned to a sick or dying animal.

A hired person comes in and does the work, not taking an interest in each animal. He doesn’t call them each by name, treat them with gentleness, or talk kindly to them. No attention is given to detail or signs that a cow is ill.

Jesus knows each one of us by name. He calls us and gently leads us individually the way we need to go. He takes time with each one of us and knows everything about us. I am so grateful that Jesus knows my name. He knows my actions and detects when something isn’t right because He is faithfully watching over my every step.

Do you know the Good Shepherd?

I pray that you know Him. Psalm 23 is my “go-to” verse when I am troubled or worried. It calms me and reminds me that God has it all in control. He will walk through the valleys with me. If you do not know Him? Please click here here and learn more. If you do know Him, I would love to hear your testimony. Click in comments below and share.

Just a Note

The above thoughts are excerpted from my submission to Gracefully Truthful. If you would like to read more. Go to Today’s reading online by clicking the image below.

gracefully truthful

Known Day 4 Christos: Digging Deeper – Gracefully Truthful

About Mandy Farmer

Pastor's Wife (retired) &  Chronic Pain Warrior blogs about how to make it through anything by relating her own life experiences to her writing. She is passionate about her love for the Lord and desires to spread that passion to others. She has a great desire to encourage women who are following behind her.

View all posts by Mandy Farmer

One Comment on “Jesus, Our Good Shepherd, The Great I AM”

  1. I was reading about Caiaphas in the gospels today, and it stood out to me once again why Jesus spent so much time calling out the Chief Priests on their behavior. It is also interesting to read in the closing books of the Old Testament that the Old Testament prophets had been pointing out the corruption of the Priesthood for a very long time. Thank you for sharing Mandy.

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