Today is another famous Gospel story from John 10:11-18 about the Good Shepherd. Notice that many of the Gospel writers use agricultural venues in their storytelling. This is because, at the time of Jesus, agriculture was the main source of income for most of the people. They would understand what Jesus did in the stories because they would be aware of different factors and circumstances. The opening line of the Gospel today is: Jesus said: “I am the Good Shepherd. A good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” This line probably refers to the practice of good shepherds who make a corral out of rocks or other things they could find in the desert. One section of the corral would be between four and six feet in length and would be left with no rocks. The shepherd himself would lay in that spot for the night and would know immediately if any sheep were trying to leave or any predators were trying to get in to eat the sheep! You can see how the Good Shepherd would lay down his life for the sheep!
I think Jesus did the same thing for us over 2000 years ago, didn’t he? Jesus gave his life on the cross so that we might have eternal life with him in heaven. He also said in another Gospel “I am with you until the end of the world.” So if Jesus gave his life for us to live forever in heaven, he also gives himself for us while we’re here on earth. What a comforting thought that is. Jesus is our Good Shepherd! He lays down his life for us and protects us every day. We only need to respond to his offer of protection and care.
Peace and All Good!