Is it possible to go from being a lamb to becoming a shepherd?
If we restrict ourselves to experiences solely from the physical world, I must admit it is too far a stretch for me. However, in the spiritual world this seems to be the desired progress, and one of the attributes of the life in Christ.
The Baptist pointed to Jesus and said:
“Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!”
So Jesus was both the Lamb of God and stated:
“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.”
If we are in the world as He is in this world (1), then we also should develop from lamb to sheep to shepherd – without losing the fact that we are God’s children all the way along.
As the lamb of God, Jesus was the perfect sacrifice. His atonement was perfect.
At the same time the idea of being ‘sacrifice’ is a central thought in the Bible. Paul touches this concept many times:
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.
Earlier in the same letter Paul quotes Psalm 44:22 when he writes:
“For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”
This must be read in the context of the fact that there is nothing that can separate us from the love of Christ. We are more than conquerors.
However, there is a sacrifice involved in going from being a lamb receiving care all the time to becoming the shepherd giving that care in and through Christ. But it is the way to go – we believe in the priesthood of all believers, and the growth of God’s Kingdom depends on this growth taking place in the individual believer.
The ‘manna’ for today, also comes from Paul:
Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood. (1)
(1) 1 John 4:17b
(2) Acts 20:28b
Words by Colonel Jostein Nielsen.