Soon after Jesus was resurrected from the dead, he appeared to His disciples for the third time. He performed yet another miracle in providing fish for the disciples who had caught nothing all night. Then after preparing a meal of fish and bread for them, Jesus poses this question to Peter "Do you love me" Of course Jesus knows that Peter loves Him, but He is wanting to get a point across to Peter. Peter responds with surprise, wondering why Jesus would question his love for Him. "Yes, Lord, you know I do" Jesus then makes this statement "feed my lambs"
Jesus asks the same question two more times. The second response from Jesus is "shepherd or take care of my sheep" No longer lambs but sheep. The third response to Peter's reply is "feed my sheep"
Feed my lambs, take care of my sheep, feed my sheep" These are commandments from Jesus to Peter and ultimately to all His disciples ie: "US". Jesus is talking about an ongoing process of shepherding and caring for the flock to adulthood and then some more. This is something that takes place over the lifetime of the sheep. It's not good enough just to feed lambs, but to take care of them, nurture them and make sure they grow up into adult, productive sheep.
Our job is not to take advantage of sheep, nor to use sheep for our own purpose. Our job is to make sure the sheep are following the Good Shepherd. To make sure the sheep don't stray and to encourage, protect, strengthen and nurture the sheep.
We as believers are all assigned this task. With the help and direction of the Holy Spirit, we can do it and do it well. It's one thing to lead people to salvation, but it's an entirely different thing to take care of the afterwards. We must ask ourselves ... "Are we winning the lost and losing the saved" To many Christians are being lost to the world because they are not being fed and nurtured to full maturity. God gave His very best, His Son Jesus, so that we could have access to eternal life. So we need to give our very best, so that He did not die in vain.
Jesus gave the great commission to His disciples in Mark 16:15 "And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature." But it is not just to preach the gospel, He also commanded in Matthew 28:19 (AMP) Go then and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,We are to preach the gospel and make disciples out of the converts. Feed my lambs, look after the sheep and when they are fully grown, continue to feed them. Every thing we do and say should be to encourage people to love the Lord with all their heart, mind and soul.
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