Sermon: The Good Shepherd (John 10:1-10)
Today, when we speak about “shepherds,” we usually think about pastors who shepherd a congregation, since the word “pastor” is a Latin word that literally means shepherd; however, the Bible uses the word shepherd to describe all God’s appointed leaders and rulers across various spheres: judges, kings, princes, prophets, priests, and other religious leaders. Those undershepherds, however, failed to care for God’s people (Isa. 56:9–12; Jer. 23:1–4; 25:32–38; Ezek. 34; Zech. 11), instead abusing their authority as a platform for their own enrichment. While they should have revealed the gracious, shepherding heart of God, they instead misused the power entrusted to them by devouring the flock.
In response, God promised that he would one day give a new shepherd who would care for God’s people as David himself had done: “And I will set up over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he shall feed them: he shall feed them and be their shepherd” (Ezek. 34:23). God will continue to appoint undershepherds (John 21:15–19; Acts 20:28; Eph. 4:11; 1 Pet. 5:1–5), but the Good Shepherd will carefully oversee the work of those undershepherds. In John 10, Jesus reveals that he is the one shepherd for whom God’s people have been waiting, and he describes his role as the Good Shepherd in this way: Communion with the Good Shepherd both delights and unites.