Two weeks ago, my church, Believers Church, started a new series called Once Upon a Time. During this series, we are looking at 8 specific parables told by Jesus. The first parable we reviewed was The Good Shepard found in John 10:1-42. I wrote a post about this very passage several months back called Are You Sheepish? You can read that post at
This week, I want to focus on another passage that parallels the scripture verses in the book of John, but is found in Ezekiel. It was mentioned as extra reading for our Be Group (or Small Group) study. So turn with me to Ezekiel 34:1-24.*
I love how the Bible weaves together the old and the new. The Lord often uses simple imagery to get His point across. In the Old Testament as well as the New Testament, we see shepherds and sheep, but occasionally goats are thrown into the mix. In these passages we will look at, Ezekiel is speaking to the people of Israel. As is the case with many Old Testament Scriptures, the meaning behind the Scriptures still rings true today.
Let’s start with the shepherds:
Then this message came to me from the Lord: “Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds, the leaders of Israel. Give them this message from the Sovereign Lord: What sorrow awaits you shepherds who feed yourselves instead of your flocks. Shouldn’t shepherds feed their sheep? …This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I now consider these shepherds my enemies, and I will hold them responsible for what has happened to my flock.” … Ezekiel 34: 1-2, 10
For those who profess to be Christ followers, I ask: “Are you sheepish?” Oh, I don’t mean shy or embarrassed easily, that would be the total opposite of what Jesus meant. When teaching on who is a true follower and what they will do, Christ used the following example:
“I tell you the truth, anyone who sneaks over the wall of a sheepfold, rather than going through the gate, must surely be a thief and a robber! But the one who enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep recognize his voice and come to him. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. After he has gathered his own flock, he walks ahead of them, and they follow him because they know his voice. They won’t follow a stranger; they will run from him because they don’t know his voice.” John 10:1-5 NLT (emphasis mine)
So, now that you know Jesus’ definition of a follower, I ask again, “Are you sheepish?”
1. Do you recognize the voice of Jesus?