Sabbath 12/12/15 Daytona SDB Church Pastor Wray sermon “Why Sheep Herders?

Sabbath 12/12/15 Daytona SDB Church Pastor Wray sermon “Why Sheep Herders? “ Luke 2:8-20

Christmas time has high levels of charity and giving. You are supposed to be nice, supposed to share gifts and supposed to give more to the church missions this time of year. It’s clear that God exalted and blessed the overlooked, the shepherds. Mary and Joseph are in a stable surrounded by animals, while she’s giving birth to Jesus. Once the beautiful baby boy has come, God sends out a birth announcement with angels and bright lights. God and Heaven are excited by this event. Never before had God taken on human flesh. This child would change the world.

Who was the angelic birth announcement sent to? Shepherds in the field and not to famous people or presidents. The announcement of the King of Kings, Lord of Lords birth was not sent to the mayor of Bethlehem or Caesar or to the powers that be in the temple. The birth announcement was given to sheep herders in Bethlehem. The question is why? Why waste it on these shepherds?

  1. God intentionally provided a glimpse of Jesus as a Good Shepherd.

  2. God went to the people that society overlooked.
Jesus is the Good Shepherd that leads people to God. Moses, Abel and David were all shepherds too. God raised up shepherds to lead Israel to a greater knowledge of God. Now a good shepherd-Jesus the Messiah has been born to lead the flocks and care for his people. Jesus described himself as the Good Shepherd. The shepherds in the field received the announcement that the Messiah had arrived. God told how Jesus’ ministry would be like, shepherding people just like sheep. Always taking care of them, watching over them because sheep are basically dumb animals. They are vulnerable to harm, stubborn and don’t listen. Jesus, like a shepherd, would be dedicated, committed to the sheep which are just like people. Jesus would be the Good Shepherd who would pay the ultimate price for his sheep and for all the non-Jewish sheep. Jesus would pay the price, give his life for all the sheep. Jesus would be the sacrificial lamb for the sins of all the people in the world. For ALL the sheep! Isaiah prophesized of Jesus being the Lamb of God that would take away all the sins of the world. In one special moment, the Good Shepherd and the Lamb of God were born.

God used the overlooked, the shepherds to give the Good News. The sheepherders were social outcasts. They were not clean cut men. They didn’t have a 9 to 5 job but were wanderers, drifters in a society that didn’t like them. There were a little shady, thieves and you didn’t want them counting offerings. They didn’t look good, didn’t smell good and you didn’t want them around too much. Because they didn’t go to the temple, they were declared religiously unclean. People were told not to touch them. If they ever did show up at church, people would look at them funny and not have anything to do with them. Shepherds were considered backward folk, rural folk, uneducated and unlearned. The shepherd was an outcast, overlooked and not good enough for God.

When the angels appeared to the shepherds, they were scared because they had been told that they were unclean to God. They were scared to death and terrified. The angels told them not to fear because they had good news for them and for all people. The Good News is that a Savior was born today! God has given to us a Savior for the overlooked of the world. God used the overlooked shepherds as messengers of the Good News. This way God gets all the glory and displays his power. The shepherds spread the word of what was told to them. The Good News that Jesus’ birth was told by unlikely messengers. God didn’t use the wise to give the Good News but He used lowly shepherds to tell it. God chose the foolish, weak, despised, lowly things of the world to share the word and give God glory.

Can you relate to the shepherds? Overlooked, lead to believe that you are not worthy of God’s love? Hear the message given to the shepherds. God loves everybody! He sent Jesus to lead and care for all people. We are ALL equal in God’s sight, no social levels. We are to honor the overlooked. We need to reach out to those that the world overlooks. We should have a heart for the lost and guide them to Jesus.