Ezekiel 34:1–10

Read the passage.

The Lord gives Ezekiel an analogy to preach to the people. The Israelites are identified as a flock of sheep and the kings and leaders over them were their shepherds. These shepherds are condemned for being sefish and greedy, caring only for their own comfort and benefit while neglecting health and safety of the sheep that provided them with such good things.

While it is expected that real shepherds would kill and eat a sheep from their flock periodically, these shepherds would do so without providing food for their sheep in the first place. The sick sheep were not cared for, others would wander away and not be sought out, and the ones that stayed behind were mistreated with “force and harshness”.

It is no wonder, then, that the sheep scattered through the wilderness and became prey for wild beasts. I expect the analogy refers to the way Israel turned to idolatry under the rule of evil kings. They wandered away from the Lord and His goodness and were consumed by their sin, sacrificing to paga deities on “every high hill”.

Because of this, the judgement on the unfaithful shepherds is that they do not get to enjoy the goods produced by their flock any more. They are removed from their position of power and the sheep are rescued from their harsh rule.

You are a kind and good shepherd to Your people, caring for them in all their troubles.

249 Words