Therefore,ye shepherds, hear the Word of the Lord; As I live, saith the Lord God, surly because my flock became a prey, and my flock became meat to every beast of the field, because there was no shepherd, neither did my shepherds search for my flock, but the shepherds fed themselves, and not my flock; Therefore, O ye shepherds, hear the word of the Lord; Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I am against the shepherds; and I will require my flock at their hand, and cause them to cease from feeding the flock; neither shall the shepherds feed themselves any more; for I will deliver my flock from their mouth, that they may not be meat for them. Ezekiel 34:7-10
What is found here is the usage of melodious metaphors for Pastors vs members of the church. Every Pastor have a commitment, no, a duty, a responsibility to take care of his members, his flock. There is no “if”, “and”, or “but”. It is a “must”. Hard as the words may be, people want to try to make an end run around this to avoid the matter, but it is written that it must be done. The metaphorical consequence is steep and should be avoided if a person abides by God’s words.
A sheep, here and there, will be lost. It is either they can not be found or can not be bought back into the flock but at least there was an attempt. There is a saying…”nothing beats a failure but a person that does not try.” If there is an attempt, there may not be a failure. But, if an attempt is not made, failure is assured. However, the shepherd takes care of the flock and will not leave the flock in jeopardy for the sake of one lost sheep. Also, there must be a stringent attempt from the heart, not a passing “try at”. God knows what’s in your heart and He even knows what you are thinking. Fear God because he is not only a jealous God but a vengeful God. For those that are not of good favor will be given just enough rope to hang themselves.
As it is read, God said that He is against the shepherd that does not take care of His flock and will avenge the act. He says He will cause the shepherd to cease feeding His flock and the shepherd shall cease being fed. God Himself will “deliver” His flock so that the flock will not become meat to every beast of the field.
This passage is a small portion of a very large book but this passage should be carefully consumed. Many people take things out of context and, therefore, get a very different meaning. However, to me, the meaning of the passage is clear and a very serious notice should be taken. I say this because this is something that happens everyday in just about every church and religion there is. I understand what the Pastor and/or deacon is going through. A church may have many members and time to take care of them is short. Then there are other things that are perceived as more important. Looking at this from a sheep herder’s point of view, there isn’t anything more important than each and every sheep in the flock.
Jumping into today’s way of life and the removal of metaphors, to the pastor nothing should be of more importance than the members of the church and all others are second. With members, every facet of things to be done is available. Tend the flock and the flock will tend the shepherd (food, wool, clothing, etc./today, all sorts of labor and/or finance). Find and save those that can be found and saved but do not put the flock nor yourself into peril.