Ezekiel 34: The Shepherds of Israel

Old Testament Seminary Student Study Guide, (2002), 172


Ezekiel 34 records additional responsibilities of Church leaders. The Lord this time compared leaders to shepherds over His sheep (people). During His earthly ministry, the Lord called Himself the “good shepherd” (John 10:14). As you read Ezekiel 34, look for what the Lord said He does that makes Him a good shepherd and for what He said the leaders of the people had done that made them bad shepherds. Look also for what He said about the sheep.

Understanding the Scriptures

Ezekiel 34

Prey (vv. 8, 22, 28)Something hunted for food 
Require my flock at their hand (v. 10)Hold them responsible for the flock 
Fold (v. 14)Fenced area for keeping flocks 
Residue (v. 18)Other, what remains 
Foul, fouled (vv. 18–19)Make unclean 
Shower (v. 26)Rain 
Broken the bands of their yoke (v. 27)Taken away their slavery, captivity, and burdens 
Plant of renown (v. 29)Productive or prosperous 

Ezekiel 34:23–24—“My Servant David”

David, in these verses, refers to the Messiah. The name David in Hebrew means “beloved.” The wonderful conditions these verses describe will come about when the Jews accept God’s beloved Son as their Messiah. See also Isaiah 9:6–7 and Revelation 22:16.

Studying the Scriptures

Do activity A as you study Ezekiel 34.

Activity A iconWhat Makes a Good Leader?

  1. 1.

    According to Ezekiel 34:1–10, 18–19, why were Israel’s leaders bad “shepherds” of the Lord’s people?

  2. 2.

    List the qualities of a good shepherd found in Ezekiel 34:11–16, and explain how someone serving in the presidency of an Aaronic Priesthood quorum or Young Women class could apply each quality to his or her calling.