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While shepherds watched…

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By Arvin Kaufman

“I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people” (Luke 2:10).

At the time of the birth of Jesus the Messiah, the angel appeared to shepherds who were watching over their flock by night.

Although these shepherds appeared as ordinary herdsmen, there is more to be perceived as to why it was shepherds that were chosen.

The scriptures refer to ‘shepherds’ as being overseers or caretakers of God’s people. Jesus himself uses the metaphor in several instances. He describes himself as a shepherd. “I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and I am known of mine” (John 10:14).

The news of Jesus’s birth was proclaimed by angels to shepherds and a sign was given to them regarding the attributes of His birth. 

“For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger” (Luke 2:11-12).

After the angels had left, the shepherds hurried off to find Mary and Joseph, with baby Jesus lying in a manger. Scripture says that when they had seen Him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard were amazed at what the shepherds said (Luke 2:15-18).

These shepherds were gifted with first hand opportunity of experiencing the joy of the birth of the Messiah.

Are you a good shepherd?

Now that you and I have a true testimony about Jesus, as witnessed through the scriptures and by the Holy Spirit, are we spreading this Gospel? Are we telling others about how Jesus was born and died for our sins? Are we encouraging others to watch and wait with us for Jesus’ second coming?

Jesus declares, in Mathew 24, that the angels will appear, this time with a loud trumpet call to gather the elect.

“Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. Watch, therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into. Therefore you also be ready, for the son of man is coming at an hour you do not expect” (Matthew 24:40-44).

To the unfaithful servant, Jesus says in Matthew 24:51, the master “will cut him in two and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites. There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” Let us be found watching for no one knows the day or hour of the Master’s return.

Blessings to you and your family this Christmas.

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