Posted by: peebles | December 15, 2011

Luke 2:8 (NIV) ~ And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.

The shepherds were the first to receive the good news about the Saviour’s birth; they were also the first to see the Great Shepherd who would lead His people, the sheep of His pasture. Can you imagine the shepherds on the fields nearby, their flocks lying down for the night in the open air, then suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favour rests.” When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.

In a prophetic analogy, the shepherds were being faithful caring for their sheep, and there on the hill top the Glory of the Lord shone around them and they received a message of hope for all mankind: a Saviour has come, who is Christ the Lord. The shepherds were at the right place and the right time in the centre of the will of God. They then went down to Bethlehem, and burning bright within them was a message from God, having seen Jesus and spent time with Him, they returned glorifying and praising God. They were touched by His glory, and so they came down and went among the people, then returned to where they had come from to tell everyone about Jesus.

There is a beautiful quote from the book called, “Hinds Feet on High Places”:

From the heights we leap and go, to the valleys down below,

Always answering to the call, to the lowest place of all.

We can spend time on the hilltop being faithful just like the shepherds in our text for today, and we can experience the Glory of His Presence, where He prepares us to go to the lowest places, even down to the place of a cave-like stable. Then, with great joy, we go among the people with this great message of hope: Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favour rests.

My friend, good shepherds are faithful shepherds always looking after their sheep, they’re always in the centre of the will of God, and are always ready to go where God tells them to go. When we receive from God a hilltop experience we are then well-able and prepared to take the good news down among the people, with great joy.

God bless you my friend, Matthew.



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