Word of the Day: Sheep

Definition: A domesticated ruminant mammal having a thick coat, raised in many breeds for its wool, edible flesh, or hide. A person regarded as timid, weak, or submissive (Merriam-Webster, 2015).

Sheep serve many purposes and are extremely valuable. They can be used for agricultural needs, fleece, meat and milk. In the Bible, they were used for sacrifice and were often referred to when illustrating examples about how the shepherd tends to them, of humility and even the use of their fleece as a disguise for wolves. “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves” (Matthew 7:15). 

In the Bible, the relationship between a good shepherd and sheep is often mentioned and used as an example of God’s love toward us. A good shepherd shows concern for his sheep, so much that if one left the herd of ninety-nine, he would go searching for that one (Luke 15:4-7).  God sent His son Jesus to save us. He laid down His life for us, the lost sheep, so that we could have eternal life with Him and be free from sin. “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep” (John 10:11). 

Jesus is a good shepherd to us and a lamb to his father. “For the Lamb who is in the center of the throne will be their Shepherd. He will lead them to wells of the water of life. God will take away all tears from their eyes” (Revelation 7:17). He is referred to in the Bible as the “Lamb of God” by John the Baptist. “The next day John the Baptist saw Jesus coming to him. He said, ‘See! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29)! Jesus did not have an easy journey while on Earth, but He executed and fulfilled His intent. Like sheep, He lived to die and be used for a purpose. His death on our behalf was necessary to bring salvation to us all! He sought His father in prayer, taught the disciples many lessons and even performed miracles. 

Do you see the importance of sheep? The Bible refers to them often, and Jesus carries many of their characteristics. We as believers should look to God for everything, allow His full control to lead us and take care of us in the same way that sheep depend solely on their shepherd.

Action: Think about a past experience where it was clear that you did not fully trust in God. Write down the outcome and things you have learned from that experience. Keep this as a reminder when you find that you are facing this again.

Prayer: Lord, thank You for this illustration of scripture that furthermore displays Your love for me. I am so grateful for the sacrifices that were made on my behalf. Your thoughts are infinite and the way that I orchestrate things, I will never understand unless You choose to reveal it to me. As I continue to seek You in Your word, please help me to learn to completely trust in You; to completely lean and depend on You. Again, I thank You for Jesus always interceding for me. All these things we pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Affirmation: I will put depending completely on God into practice daily.