Modern ShepherdIn my devotions this week, I was studying the book of Ezekiel. In Chapter 34 Ezekiel is talking about the differences between a “bad shepherd” and a “good shepherd”. 

I found it to be amazingly similar to what I feel the differences are between a “self-serving leader” and a “servant leader”.

571 Years BC Ezekiel illustrated the following attributes of both bad shepherds and good shepherds:

Bad Shepherds

  • Take care of themselves
  • Worry about their own health
  • Rule harshly and brutally
  • Abandon and scatter the sheep
  • Keep the best for themselves 

Good Shepherds

  • Take care of their flock
  • Strengthen the weak and sick, & search for the lost
  • Rule lovingly and gently
  • Gather and protect the sheep
  • Give their best to their sheep

I think we can learn a lot from these timeless lessons from Ezekiel. He is referring to the leaders of Israel when he talks about the bad shepherds, and he was talking about the coming Messiah (Jesus) when referring to the good shepherd. The attributes of a “Good Shepherd” clearly would define what is in the heart of a servant leader, and affirms Jesus as the perfect model for servant leadership.

Are you focused on taking care of your flock?

Mark Deterding

Woe to the shepherds of Israel who only take care of themselves! Should not shepherds take care of the flock?  Ezekiel 34:2