I have to admit I do find the metaphoric use of sheep rather amusing. There are far too many Christians that resemble those bleating unquestioning conformist critters. The image of Christ as the Good Shepherd on the other hand doesn’t quite work for me. I have to question the notion that a shepherd whose flock is so unruly and scattered is really that “good.” After all, the main job of a shepherd is to keep his flock together and out of harm. Jesus, even as mythical figure, has failed miserably at both.
According to the World Christian Encyclopedia there are an estimated 33,000 sect/denominations within Christianity. It has taken some time for such a large number to diverge but there is absolutely no evidence that Christianity was ever anywhere near a unified faith. If Jesus was such a great and inspirational leader why where there dozens of sects bickering within a handful of decades after his supposed demise? You would think that if he set such a wonderful example it would be easier to follow.
Not only has Jesus’ “teachings” failed to create anything resembling a unified “flock” they have also not prevented all manner of death and destruction. Christians have always found ways to use their differences to harass and even attack each other, not to mention non-Christians. Frequently, their faith has played a key role in such abuses.
So what makes Jesus a “Good Shepherd”?