The shepherds of this chapter were not the religious leaders of the people, but rulers who sought in their government not the good of the people but their own selfish ends. But the statements made by the prophet may be rightly applied to rapacious priests who care more for the fleece than for the flock. Pastors are required to lead the flock of God not for filthy lucre but as examples for the sheep, 1 Peter 5:2-3. It is their duty, also, to strengthen the spiritually diseased, heal the sick, bind up the broken in heart, and seek the lost.
Notice the tender manner in which the Lord Jesus Himself supplies the deficiencies of His unfaithful servants. In beautiful contrast to their selfish cruelty and rapacity, He sets Himself in cloudy and dark days to gather and tend His people, though they had been as scattered sheep, each taking his own way. When the ministers of His Church fail in their duty, the Lord hastens to supply their lack. Without doubt these gracious promises refer primarily to the Lord's Second Advent, when He will seek out and deliver His Chosen People, and bring them to their own land. But surely we must not limit the reference thus. We are His sheep, by purchase and by choice. He knows us, as we know Him. He has sought and saved us. He feds us and causes us to lie down beside the waters of rest. [source]
Chapter Summary: Ezekiel 34
1A reproof of the shepherds 7God's judgment against them 11His providence over his flock 20The kingdom of Christ
What do the individual words in Ezekiel 34:1 mean?