The Shepherds Are the First To Hear
When you have really important news to share who do you share it with? Normally we share it with the people who are closest to us in relationship…mom, dad, spouse, children, brother, sister, etc… But if we exclude family, we might share our important information with people that we think are important. With whom does God share this incredibly important news about the birth of His Son? He shares it with shepherds…ordinary, run of the mill shepherds. Not rulers or political or religious leaders. He doesn’t share the news with socialites but rather, shepherds.
We are not given a reason in the Bible as to why God chose shepherds. Some have speculated the following reasons:
– These shepherds were from Bethlehem where often the sheep used as Passover sacrifices were raised. Therefore, even in Jesus’ birth we are pointed to His death as the Lamb of God.
– Abraham, Moses and David were shepherds and God is honoring His words to them about a Messiah by announcing the Messiah to shepherds.
– The “shepherd” is the image that the word of God uses for a Christian leader.
I don’t know if any of these reasons are the reasons or not. I have a reason that I believe, that others have shared as well. I think that God first announced this amazing birth to the shepherds because they were very ordinary. In the eyes of some they were despised. This very “ordinary” birth from the perspective of the world was announced to very ordinary people. Jesus was not going to be the Savior of just the rich and privileged. Jesus is the Savior to the poor and ordinary. Perhaps that’s why God first announced to the shepherds. I don’t know for sure, but it makes sense to me…and it makes me glad to serve a God who would do this. How about you?