And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them. Luke 2:8-9
Joseph was a shepherd when the Lord gave him dreams of his future (Genesis 37). Moses was a shepherd when the Lord appeared to him in the burning bush (Exodus 3). David was a shepherd when Samuel anointed him king over Israel (1 Samuel 16). The Lord, himself, is a shepherd to his people (Psalm 23). Amos was a shepherd before the word of the Lord came to him to prophesy against Israel (Amos 1:1).
Shepherds play no small role in the history of God’s redemptive plan. It should come as no surprise that it was a group of shepherds who first received the birth announcement of the long-awaited Christ.
“Behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the
people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior,
who is Christ the Lord.”
The advent of the one prophesied to “shepherd his flock in the strength of the Lord” (Micah 5) was first heralded to a group of shepherds! They were to find him in Bethlehem, the home town of the shepherd-turned-king, David.
The announcement didn’t come to the Pharisees or the Sanhedrin. It didn’t come to the High Priest or the wise men. Not King Herod or even Caesar Augustus! The most glorious announcement ever made—sung by a choir of angels—was delivered to shepherds in a dark field at night. Common, poor men with little to no education or social status, doing dirty, mundane work.
How great this announcement is! Good news of great joy is for every person! Even the ordinary. The unqualified. The down-and-out. The overlooked. Those with nothing to give but their gratitude and worship. Unto us is born a Savior, who is Christ the Lord!