Jesusthe SHEPHERD OF THE SHEEP
Throughout the Old Testament, there are many motifs and symbols for Christ. There is none more important than the shepherd and his sheep. The shepherd of the Old Testament is found to be both a leader and a companion to his sheep (1 Sam. 17:34-37 David was protecting his sheep.)
As a shepherd: He knows his flock and is gentle with them ( Prov. 27:23); carries the in his arms (Isa. 40:11)-- rescues them from danger (Amos 3:12); seeks after the lost sheep (Ezek. 34:12). He is the one who opens the gate to allow the sheep to go in and out; the wolves would have to get by his guarding the flock.
We find the same qualities of the Old Testament shepherd in Jesus who is our chief shepherd.
Micah 5:2: "But you Bethlehem-Ephratah, in the land of Judah, for out of you will come a ruler who will be called the shepherd of my people." God has appointed one to be the shepherd of his people in both the Old and New Testament.
It is Jehovah who provides for his sheep Ps 100:3: "We are his people and the sheep of his pasture."
Two of the major Old Testament prophets portrayed Jehovah in tender and vivid pictures. Jehovah was a Shepherd of Love. Isa.53 "Like sheep we have all of us wandered away."
Isaiah wrote, but Jehovah says, "I will search for my sheep and care for them...I will deliver them out of all the places to which they have been scattered....in a good pasturage I will feed them" (Ez. 34:11-16.)
Isaiah also wrote that Jehovah "will collect together the lambs and in his bosom
he will carry them. Those giving suck he will conduct with care" (Is. 40:11).
Its no wonder Christ is called the Good Shepherd (Jn. 10), the Chief Shepherd (1 Peter 5:4), the Great Shepherd (Heb. 13:20).
It was Jesus who it is written of Matt 9:36: "But when He saw the multitudes, He
was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep
having no shepherd." He was there shepherd.
Heb.13:20-21: "Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen."
Zech. 13:7 'Awake 0 sword against my shepherd, against the man who is my companion (equal) says the Lord of Host. Strike the shepherd and the sheep will be scattered." Notice God says he is the shepherd, Jesus is the one who God ordained for us to follow, the shepherd that was struck was Jesus.
Yet the striking of Him was fulfilled in Mt. 26:31; the night of Jesus' betrayal.
Matt 26:31-35 Then Jesus said to them, "All of you will be made to stumble because of Me this night, for it is written:
'I will strike the Shepherd, And the sheep of the flock will be scattered.'
Ps. 22 is the account of the good shepherd laying down his life for his sheep. PS. 23 David said that Jehovah is our shepherd.
There is only one shepherd from the Old Testament continuing in the New Testament.
Ezek.34:23, Zech.11:4-14, Zech.13:7 Christ claimed he was the fulfillment of these prophecies (Jn.10:8,11,14).
It is the Son who is to guide and lead one to green pastures and still waters. John 10:14-16: "I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own." s the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep." And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd."Ps.23 tells us the Lord (Yahweh) is the shepherd.
Jehovah's Witnesses make it a point to say you follow Jesus we follow Jehovah. But who did the disciples and apostles follow?
We find in the New Testament that Jesus called everyone to follow him Mt.4:19,8:22 16:24,19:2; Lk.5:27; Mk.2:14,6:1, Jn.10:27,12:26, 13:36 ,18:15, 21:19
Not once did he say to follow Jehovah the Father.
Eph. 5:23: "For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ
is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body."
We find it is Jesus who will have us drink from the fountains of living
waters throughout time. Rev 7:17: "for the Lamb who is in the midst of the throne will
shepherd them and lead them to living fountains of waters. And God will wipe away
every tear from their eyes."
Heb 3:7-12: " Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says: "Today, if you will hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, in the day of trial in the wilderness, where your fathers tested Me, tried Me, and saw My works forty years. Therefore I was angry with that generation, and said, 'They always go astray in their heart, and they have not known My ways.' So I swore in My wrath, 'They shall not enter My rest.' " Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God;" Do you hear the voice of the shepherd?
Jesus makes it clear those who follow God will follow him. John 10:25-30: " Jesus answered them, "I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in My Father's name, they bear witness of Me. "But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep, as I said to you. "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. "And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. "My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father's hand. "I and My Father are one."
The sheep are Jesus', they are in His hands and the Fathers. If one does not follow Jesus they cannot know the Father and they are not his sheep.
Without him one cannot follow Jehovah.