Friday, 31st October 2014
Missionaries of the Sacred Heart

Scripture Reflection for the Fourth Sunday of Easter

Posted on 25. Apr, 2012

Fr. Nick writes …

CHRIST THE GOOD SHEPHERD

In today’s Gospel, Jesus uses a most expressive image in order to convey to us and his listeners the quality and intimacy of the relationship He wishes to have with us. Jesus, being the good teacher that He was, reaches for a local and homely image that would be most familiar to His listeners.  Everyone can relate to the image of a Shepherd.  To ensure that the full force of the image is grasped by us, it is helpful to realize that in Jesus’ time the shepherd lived with his sheep and even slept in the same sheepfold.  There was no gate to the enclosure, so at night the shepherd lay across the opening in order to protect his sheep from danger.  The sheep totally depended on the shepherd for good pastures, security and direction.  The good shepherd continually risked his life to safeguard the welfare of the sheep. Here we have another attempt by Jesus to change our image of God.  Far from presenting us with a remote, judgemental and punitive God, we are presented with a most loving, caring and compassionate God.   A God who has tender concern for a crippled man as we read in the Acts of the Apostles.  He is a God who has  so much love for us that He raised us up to the dignity of being His children, intimate members of God’s family with a most promising and grace-filled future. (I John, Ch.3.)