While Shepherds Watched

There are many beautiful things about the Christmas story, and one of these is that news of the most pivotal moment in history, the coming of Jesus Christ, BC turns to AD, was first announced, not to respectable, wealthy, religious leaders, but to shepherds.

Shepherds in the time of Jesus were among the most despised, belittled and maligned in society (not at all the romantic view some may have of them.) They were considered untrustworthy, treated as second class citizens and deprived of all civil rights. Shepherds could not be admitted to court as witnesses, it was forbidden to buy milk or wool from them and pasturing of flocks was banned in Israel except on desert plains.

How wonderful that God does not right people off, or judge someone by their history or reputation. God sees those who others miss and chooses those who others would dismiss. He identifies so completely with those who are marginalized that he even calls himself the Good Shepherd!