The Good Shepherd

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. John 10:11 NIV

A good shepherd is often used as an image to describe the qualities and actions of a caring and responsible leader, especially when referring to God or Jesus Christ. Here are some key attributes and actions associated with a good shepherd:

Caring and Protective:

A good shepherd cares deeply for the well-being of the flock, providing guidance, nourishment, and protection.

In the Bible, God and Jesus are often depicted as caring shepherds who watch over and protect their people.

Leading and Guiding:

A good shepherd leads the flock to green pastures and still waters, ensuring they have access to nourishment and rest.

A good leader guides and directs those under their care, leading them towards positive and fulfilling paths.

Personal Relationship:

A good shepherd knows each member of the flock individually and is attentive to their needs.

This reflects the idea of a personal relationship between God and each of us. God knows and cares for each of us individually.

Risk and Sacrifice:

A good shepherd is willing to face danger and make personal sacrifices to protect the flock.

Jesus is the “Good Shepherd” who laid down His life for His sheep (us), symbolizing the sacrificial nature of His death on the cross for our salvation.

Seeking the Lost:

A good shepherd actively seeks out and rescues any sheep that may have strayed or become lost.

This aspect is highlighted in Jesus’ parables, such as the Parable of the Lost Sheep in Luke 15:3-7, where the shepherd goes after the one lost sheep, emphasizing the value of each individual.

Overall, the metaphor of a good shepherd in the Bible conveys qualities of care, guidance, protection, and a willingness to make personal sacrifices for the well-being of those under their care. It is a powerful image used to illustrate God’s relationship with us. The qualities of the Good Shepherd are ones we can emulate.

–Diane (

Written by Diane Levy


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