One Shepherd Over Them
Ezekiel 34:23-25 (ESV) -- And I will set up over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he shall feed them: he shall feed them and be their shepherd. And I, the LORD, will be their God, and my servant David shall be prince among them. I am the LORD; I have spoken. I will make with them a covenant of peace and banish wild beasts from the land, so that they may dwell securely in the wilderness and sleep in the woods.
There are prophecies throughout the Old Testament that tell of Jesus’ coming. God speaks through the prophets to give His people hope of their Redeemer. The Messiah is foretold in all kinds of ways, using different kinds of illustrations to highlight His coming.
Our passage today is one of those prophecies that God’s people held tightly to in anticipation of Israel’s savior coming to the world. We read in Ezekiel 34:23-25, “And I will set up over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he shall feed them: he shall feed them and be their shepherd. And I, the LORD, will be their God, and my servant David shall be prince among them. I am the LORD; I have spoken. I will make with them a covenant of peace and banish wild beasts from the land, so that they may dwell securely in the wilderness and sleep in the woods.”
God speaks first-hand through Ezekiel in this text. He says He will set up one shepherd, His servant David, over Israel. David had been gone hundreds of years at this point. What is God talking about when He references David? It is a reference to the promise that David’s throne would be occupied by his offspring forever. The servant of David is the fulfillment of the Davidic covenant. This shepherd will feed them and be their shepherd. Shepherds oversee and guide the flock. It shouldn’t be any surprise that one of the ways Jesus identifies Himself in John 10 is the Good Shepherd.
This promise from God was fulfilled in Christ. This means it is true for us today. Christ is the Good Shepherd who leads us. He feeds and nourishes us each day as we look to Him. A covenant of peace has been established for us through Christ. His shed blood atoned for our sins and made us inheritors of the covenant.
These prophecies remind us that God keeps His Word. His promises are never void. He never fails to uphold everything He promises. In the same way that people from thousands of years ago awaited the promises of God to come to pass, we wait too. But His promise to them is a hope to us as we wait for future promises.
Reflection & Journal:
- Why are prophecies like this so important to our faith?
- What does this particular prophecy tell us about the coming Messiah? Did Jesus fulfill it?
- How can our faith be strengthened by this text?
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