Friday, December 7, 2012

Shepherds by Pastor Poppie Paul

1 Samuel 17:32-37 (NLT)
32  “Don’t worry about this Philistine,” David told Saul.
“I’ll go fight him!”
33  “Don’t be ridiculous!” Saul replied.
“There’s no way you can fight this Philistine
and possibly win! You’re only a boy,
and he’s been a man of war since his youth.”
34  But David persisted. “I have been taking care
of my father’s sheep and goats,” he said.
“When a lion or a bear comes to steal a lamb from the flock,
35  I go after it with a club and rescue the lamb from its mouth.
If the animal turns on me, I catch it by the jaw and club it to death.
36  I have done this to both lions and bears, and I’ll do it to this pagan Philistine, too,
for he has defied the armies of the living God!
37  The LORD who rescued me from the claws of the lion and the bear will rescue me from this Philistine!” Saul finally consented. “All right, go ahead,” he said. “And may the LORD be with you!”

I have shared this many times... but I will say it yet again.  I love the role the Shepherds played in the Christmas Narrative.  King David gives us a different picture of a Shepherd than we normally have.  He tells us that while watching the family sheep he killed a lion and a bear.  Not all Shepherds were like David, but they were a rough and wild group. 

You can read the story in Luke 2:8-20.  Two things jump out to me.  First is the angels appearing to the Shepherds.  Next are the Shepherds showing up in Bethlehem.  Scripture doesn't tell us what Mary, Joseph, and the Shepherds talked about.  But I have a hunch that the biggest, roughest group of men in the area showing up to marvel at your son was very encouraging to the new parents.  What an amazing validation of the crazy story they had been told by an Angel and a Priest.

How fitting!  Lord Jesus and King David are both born in Bethlehem  David was a Shepherd before he was a King.  Jesus was born a King and grows up to be the Good Shepherd.  So God picks Shepherd from the field to hear the message, visit His Son, and then spread the story.  The Shepherds may have been the commonest and the coolest participants in the story! 

Don't be surprised if God uses some common and everyday thing
to touch you or teach you this Christmas!


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