Focus, today, is upon the language appearing throughout the holy writings that describes the people of GOD as “sheep”.  To be labeled as sheep or servants of GOD in the Bible is by no means intended as condemnation or insult; and the ownership by GOD of mankind and all Creation are to be proclaimed as are his majesty and sovereignty.  With the divine response to the fall of Adam, sheep became inseparable from salvation through provisions for atonement, expiation, and remission of sins by using blood from offerings and sacrifices; by GOD introducing inheritance among mankind that includes duty, priesthood, prophecy, and sacred knowledge as well as by Deity bestowing divine gifts upon those who continually display humility, love, meekness, obedience, and zeal.  The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Hercules” (Level 1 with 3 points, a member since May 21, 2013) posted the following:

 

Theists and atheists, is there a problem with people happily considering themselves to be ‘sheep’? Why or why not?

Update: Of course I mean in the proverbial, figurative sense, not the literal sense

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  I will feed my flock, and I will cause them to lie down, saith the Lord GOD.  I will seek that which was lost, and bring again that which was driven away, and will bind up that which was broken, and will strengthen that which was sick:  but I will destroy the fat and the strong; I will feed them with judgment.  And as for you, O my flock, thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I judge between cattle and cattle, between the rams and the he goats.  Seemeth it a small thing unto you to have eaten up the good pasture, but ye must tread down with your feet the residue of your pastures? and to have drunk of the deep waters, but ye must foul the residue with your feet?  And as for my flock, they eat that which ye have trodden with your feet; and they drink that which ye have fouled with your feet.  Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD unto them; Behold, I, even I, will judge between the fat cattle and between the lean cattle.  Because ye have thrust with side and with shoulder, and pushed all the diseased with your horns, till ye have scattered them abroad;  Therefore will I save my flock, and they shall no more be a prey; and I will judge between cattle and cattle.  And I will set up one shepherd over them, and he shall feed them, even my servant David; he shall feed them, and he shall be their shepherd.  And I the LORD will be their God, and my servant David a prince among them; I the LORD have spoken it.  (Ezekiel 34:  15-24, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Called Slaves by GOD? (02/10/2016); An Eternal Inheritance? (06/26/2016); Called To Be Servants? (11/25/2015); The Lamb of GOD (08/19/2015); The Sheep Who Lost Their Way? (11/18/2014); Restoring The Lost? (11/19/2014); Teachings on Judgment (06/06/2013); Those Who Never Heard? (06/07/2013)

 

“Hercules”, for most mature Christian believers being called “sheep” who belong to “the Good Shepherd” is thought of as a high privilege.  Keep in mind that during their more than 400-year sojourn among the Egyptians, Joseph and his brothers as Hebrews, and the house of Jacob were set apart as much by their despised occupation as keepers of livestock as by their ethnicity and family ties.  The bias, discrimination, exaggerated pride, and prejudice shown by the Egyptians further set Jacob apart as sanctified to GOD, and served as a shield and wall separating his people in a place of widespread spiritual confusion.  Because the inborn instinct within sheep makes them congregate and group together with quietness and simplicity, large flocks of sheep may be managed with relatively little manpower.  While rams within a flock will dominate all the others, sheep also are capable of distinguishing the individual humans who regularly come among them, and respond as if in a personal relationship (i.e., like pets).  Of all living creatures, a lamb was chosen to bear the wrath of GOD against the first pair (Adam and Eve); and the sentence of death required by divine law was brought against a docile and harmless substitute (we say, “an innocent”).  With this in view, the same Good Shepherd, is also the Lamb of GOD whose blood and body are provided for atonement and propitiation of sin.  Consider how some of this is stated using language from the Bible:

(1.)  Genesis 3:  21-24, King James Version (KJV):  21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.  22 And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil:  and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:  23 Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.  24 So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.

(2.)  Genesis 46:  31-34, KJV:  31 And Joseph said unto his brethren, and unto his father’s house, I will go up, and shew Pharaoh, and say unto him, My brethren, and my father’s house, which were in the land of Canaan, are come unto me;  32 And the men are shepherds, for their trade hath been to feed cattle; and they have brought their flocks, and their herds, and all that they have.  33 And it shall come to pass, when Pharaoh shall call you, and shall say, What is your occupation?  34 That ye shall say, Thy servants’ trade hath been about cattle from our youth even until now, both we, and also our fathers:  that ye may dwell in the land of Goshen; for every shepherd is an abomination unto the Egyptians.

(3.)  Ezekiel 34:  30-31, KJV:  30 Thus shall they know that I the LORD their God am with them, and that they, even the house of Israel, are my people, saith the Lord GOD.  31 And ye my flock, the flock of my pasture, are men, and I am your God, saith the Lord GOD.

(4.)  John 1:  29-34, KJV:  29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.  30 This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me:  for he was before me.  31 And I knew him not:  but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.  32 And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.  33 And I knew him not:  but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.  34 And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.

(5.)  John 10:  11-16, KJV:  11 I am the good shepherd:  the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.  12 But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth:  and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep.  13 The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep.  14 I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.  15 As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father:  and I lay down my life for the sheep.  16 And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold:  them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.

There is far more to be said, carefully examined, and spiritually understood.  (For example, (6.)  1st Peter 5:  2-4, KJV:  2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;  3 Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being examples to the flock.  4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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