Read the “0909 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon.
“And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel, prophesy, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD unto the shepherds; Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! should not the shepherds feed the flocks? Ye eat the fat, and ye clothe you with the wool, ye kill them that are fed: but ye feed not the flock. The diseased have ye not strengthened, neither have ye healed that which was sick, neither have ye bound up that which was broken, neither have ye brought again that which was driven away, neither have ye sought that which was lost; but with force and with cruelty have ye ruled them. And they were scattered, because there is no shepherd: and they became meat to all the beasts of the field, when they were scattered. My sheep wandered through all the mountains, and upon every high hill: yea, my flock was scattered upon all the face of the earth, and none did search or seek after them.” (Ezekiel 34:1-6)
Good morning. During the time of Ezekiel, God was having trouble with His shepherds. They were not taking care of His flocks. The sheep have needs, and they trust the shepherd. The shepherds were not doing anything to relieve their pain, heal their wounds, or to strengthen the sheep. Now shepherds are human: there is none righteous, no not one; and for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:10 and 23). Even David, a man after God’s own heart, failed the sheep and the sheep suffered. 1Chronicles 21 says…
“And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel.” (1Chronicles 21:1)
“And God was displeased with this thing; therefore he smote Israel.” (1Chronicles 21:7)
“So the LORD sent pestilence upon Israel: and there fell of Israel seventy thousand men.” (1Chronicles 21:14)
1) A Leader’s Sin Can Be Costly.
“And David said unto God, Is it not I that commanded the people to be numbered? even I it is that have sinned and done evil indeed; but as for these sheep, what have they done? let thine hand, I pray thee, O LORD my God, be on me, and on my father’s house; but not on thy people, that they should be plagued.” (1Chronicles 21:17)
2) A Leader Should Take Responsibility For His Actions.
“Then the angel of the LORD commanded Gad to say to David, that David should go up, and set up an altar unto the LORD in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite.” (1Chronicles 21:18)
“And king David said to Ornan, Nay; but I will verily buy it for the full price: for I will not take that which is thine for the LORD, nor offer burnt offerings without cost. So David gave to Ornan for the place six hundred shekels of gold by weight.” (1Chronicles 21:24-25)
3) A Leader’s Sin Should Cost Him: It Is Called Chastening.
“For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.” (Hebrews 12:6)
Now here is the lesson. No matter how low you are on the totem pole, there is somebody watching and learning from you. If you are saved you are a shepherd representing the Lord Jesus Christ. The only Good Shepherd that others may see is Jesus in us.
“And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” (2Corinthians 3:18-21)
Before I attended Texas Baptist College in Longview Texas, we were at one of their Soul Winning Clinics. While sitting there in the auditorium, a young boy came up to me and asked me to sign his Bible. I told him I was nobody. He said, “Nobodies can be somebody someday.”
I signed his Bible. I still consider myself a nobody, but it got me through college. I knew that little kid would be watching me. I knew people back home would be watching me. Being the oldest student, at 41, I knew the other students would be watching me. It took 5 years, but praise the Lord I graduated. What kind of influence I had on others, if any, is known only by God. But if it wasn’t for the others, I have no idea where I would be. Thank you. When we care about others, we’ll care about the sheep. Somebody is watching you, be a good shepherd.
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