““I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd sacrifices His life for the sheep. A hired hand will run when he sees a wolf coming. He will abandon the sheep because they don’t belong to him and he isn’t their shepherd. And so the wolf attacks them and scatters the flock. The hired hand runs away because he’s working only for the money and doesn’t really care about the sheep.””
Jesus often used the image of a sheep and Shepherd to describe His role in the believers life, and more obviously, because the people He was speaking to would have clearly understood this imagery because a lot of them were shepherds. Something that always stands out about the imagery of the sheep and shepherd is the care and protection a shepherd gives to his sheep. The sheep are 100% reliant on the shepherd to protect them from danger and he always does. He leads them, cares for them, provides for them and they follow him, because they know his voice.
Each of these attributes are what we find in our Saviour, in our great Shepherd, Jesus Christ. To protect us, His sheep, He had to lay down His life for us. He did not abandon us to be consumed by the enemy, the wolf, but by laying down His life and rising again, He defeated the wolf and lives eternally interceding on our behalf. Jesus is not an imposter, like a hired hand. No He is the real deal. He is the God who calls us by name, and those who hear His voice, follow Him. Will you follow the Great Shepherd? The One who cares so deeply about you?