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Sheep Without a Shepherd

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A Sermon on Matthew 9:36

When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. (ESV)

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What are the essentials of the Christian Gospel? Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones analyzes Matthew 9:36, in which Jesus sees a multitude of people and has compassion on them. Dr. Lloyd-Jones recognizes the unique authority of Jesus, the truth of our sinful disposition, and the comfort that only Christ can bring as essentials of the Gospel. He examines the human condition and finds that we are still sheep without a shepherd. Despite the appearance of development and progress, life is the same. The multitude is rightly related to sheep in the way they are fainting, scattered abroad, harassed, mangled, and distressed. They are sheep at the mercy of thieves and robbers, dogs and wolves. Men and women are in a state of bewilderment and we have all gone astray. The world is without a shepherd—no politician, no statesman, no philosopher, or thinker can give us rest from our bewilderment. Yet, Jesus Christ looks upon us and is moved with compassion. Jesus does not belong to the multitude, so He can be the Good Shepherd that we need. He is the only hope for the world. Would you follow the voice of the Good Shepherd so that you may find rest and peace?


Additional Scripture Translations

Matthew 9:36, New American Standard Bible

36Seeing the crowds, He felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and downcast, like sheep without a shepherd.

Matthew 9:36, King James Version

36¶ But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.


About Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.