The Sunday Morning Tune-up ~ December 29th, 2013

The Good Shepherd

The Good Shepherd

Good Sunday Morning Dear Friend. Welcome to the last Tune-up in 2013! Whether you are someone who feels we are on the verge of some terrible storm-like cataclysmic disaster, or just a person who feels we are in the normal cycle of ebb and flow no different from all the others…this tune-up is for you. It comes to me from two places; The Old and New Testaments…

Noah

I think there are many of us in the Liberty Movement who find ourselves relating almost daily to Noah. After all, he too experienced a profound perception of events both current and anticipated that were ridiculed as alien by the existing establishment as well as his own contemporaries.

In Noah’s case, his perception is the result of being chosen by God for who he was and how he lived. He “found favor in God’s eyes” not only because he was righteous, we are told, but because he was the only follower of God left on the earth! “We learn from Noah that it is possible to remain faithful and pleasing to God even in the midst of a corrupt and sinful generation.” How tragically familiar is this story in today’s world? How many of our children are choosing vice over virtue, sin over salvation and fun over faith because of our own derelictions? How many of our communities are turning into Detroit’s and Camden’s because we have exchanged Trust in God for Faith in Government?

How many of us will sit with our popcorn and be entertained by Russell Crowe’s portrayal of Noah from the lofty throne of our creature comforts, far above and removed from the significance of our part in the original…even as our own flood waters are cresting?

Jesus

In the New Testament, God became man to save us from drowning a second time. But we’re like professional computer hackers. God creates a security fire wall, and we create a virus to breach it in return, or so it seems.

God became the “good shepherd” to keep us from the thieves, robbers and wolves. He gathered us like children at his feet and drew us closer to God through the use of “parables”.

Parable #21 — John 10:1-18 — Shepherd and His Flock

“I tell you the truth, the man who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber. The man who enters by the gate is the shepherd of his sheep. The watchman opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.

When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.” Jesus used this figure of speech, but they did not understand what he was telling them.

Therefore Jesus said again, “I tell you the truth, I am the gate for the sheep.

All who ever came before me were thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.

The hired hand is not the shepherd who owns the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.

“I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep.

I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again.

No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”

We have forgotten these things. We have become like the sheep that’ve taken a karate lesson or two and now foolishly believe we can protect ourselves and our families from the forces of evil that have completely encircled the herd. Worse than that, we’ve allowed the robbers and thieves in place of the “good shepherd”. Even the shepherds themselves have become trembling servants to the wolf! The good news is that it is never too late to start remembering and listening again…and teaching our children the same. You know, a parable a day keeps the wolves at bay! 😉

Full Disclosure ~ I am the least “righteous” and “blameless” man you can imagine. My faith has grown “singular”, but still too far from “unshakeable” to please me. I am simply a man who intuited a song and learned to trust the source.

Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly. ~ Anonymous

 

Chip Murray: Wide Awake
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About Chip Murray

Singer/Songwriter
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