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Spoke 16Spoke 16

ע

Spoke 16 - Ayin

Nehemiah, Zechariah, 1 Peter


Spoke 16 - Ayin - The Chief Shepherd

Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.

1 Peter 5:1ff (Spoke 16, Cycle 3)


The Good Shepherd

Themes based on the Eye, Vision, Sight, Oversight, Shepherds, and Bishops dominate Spoke 16. In particular, it is in 1 Peter that we read of Jesus as our Chief Shepherd and the Shepherd and Bishop of our souls. The divine intent is particularly evident in that these themes appear in 1 Peter but not II Peter, the latter being supernaturally linked with Malachi and the coming of the Lord!

The word translated as "bishop" in the quote above is επισκοποϛ(episkopos), from the roots epi (upon/over) and skopos (examine/look). This is origin of the name of the Episcopal Church which is governed by a counsel of Bishops or Overseers. The root skopos is familiar through the many English words based on it, such as telescope, microscope and periscope. The one thing all these words have in common is the idea of vision, sight. Klein traces the root of the English bishop to the Greek episkopos via the Middle English biscop, which represents a sort of a phonetic midpoint between the two.

In Hebrew, the word for a "Shepherd" is רעה (Ro'eh), from the verbal root meaning to feed. This manifests in the "Ayin" verse of the alphabet Psalm 145 which says: "The eyes of all wait upon thee; and thou givest them their meat in due season." Thus Peter received of the Lord the thrice-repeated command "Feed my sheep." The root ra'ah is variously translated as feed, shepherd, pastor, or herdman. It implies a close familiarity, hence a friend, as discussed on Spoke 3 in relation to the Holy Spirit. As with other fundamental words such as אב (Av, Father) and בן (Ben, Son), the meaning of this word is easily understood by analyzing its constituent letters, (see above):

רעה (Ro'eh, Shepherd) = ה (Hey, Behold) . ע (Ayin, Eye) . ר (Resh, Head/Chief)

In plain English, the Shepherd represents the Chief Eye, Head Eye or the Eye of the Leader. This understanding coincides almost exactly with Dr. Frank Seekins analysis, the only variations being his understanding of Resh as a symbol of a Person (because it means Head) and Heh as a symbol of a "window" so he understands the "Shepherd" as "a person looking out of the window, or as one who watches intently" Hebrew Word Pictures (pg. 1).

In light of God as the true Head and Chief, Who Himself has declared "I am the first (Roshon)", this sacred word reveals God as our omniscient, all seeing Shepherd. This is all integrated with the geometric structure of the Wheel. The graph below shows the distribution density (hits per verse) of the word shepherd on the Wheel:

This graph simply displays what is obvious to anyone who reads Scripture - Zechariah and I Peter are profoundly integrated around the common theme of the Shepherd. The fact that Peter himself was the chief shepherd, who was always listed first amongst the disciples, shines with extra light as we behold his first epistle placed here on Spoke 16 by God Himself.

Peter's exhortation against the fleecing of the God's flock found in the verse at the head of this section, is echoed in Zechariah on Cycle 2 of Spoke 16:

Thus saith the LORD my God; Feed the flock of the slaughter; Whose possessors slay them, and hold themselves not guilty: and they that sell them say, Blessed be the LORD; for I am rich: and their own shepherds pity them not.

Zechariah 11:4 (Spoke 16, Cycle 2)

These verses are linked not only thematically, but also by the by the link set ("Feed the flock of") [Verify] which is found only on Spoke 16 in the books of Zechariah and 1 Peter:

keySpoke 16 KeyLink: 'Feed the flock of ...'
Zechariahchain1 Peter

This is the incredible work of God: not only is each Spoke differentiated from all others by unique KeySets, but the content of the KeySets integrates with the theme of the each Spoke and the meaning of the Hebrew letter governing it!

The theme of the Shepherd saturates Spoke 16. As Jesus approached His hour of trial, he revealed that Zechariah was speaking of Him when he said:

Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the LORD of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones.

Zechariah 13:7 (Spoke 16, Cycle 2)

As discussed in The Great Cloud of Witnesses, the scattering of the Sheep unites all nine books on Spokes 15, 16, and 17:

Epistles to the Scattered: James 1 Peter 2 Peter
Post-Exilic Minor Prophets: Haggai Zechariah Malachi
Post-Exilic OT History:  Ezra Nehemiah Esther

The relation between the Eye and the Shepherd is further amplified in Zechariah :

Woe to the idol shepherd that leaveth the flock! the sword shall be upon his arm, and upon his right eye: his arm shall be clean dried up, and his right eye shall be utterly darkened.

Zechariah 11:17 (Spoke 16, Cycle 2)

Furthermore, only in Zechariah does God speak of "the great day of the Lord" as the opening of His eyes:

And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it. In that day, saith the LORD, I will smite every horse with astonishment, and his rider with madness: and I will open mine eyes upon the house of Judah, and will smite every horse of the people with blindness.

Zechariah 12:2-4 (Spoke 16, Cycle 2)

It is Zechariah who speaks of the time when "the eyes of man, as of all the tribes of Israel, shall be toward the LORD." Likewise, Zechariah is the only book of the Prophets that speaks of the apple of God's eye.

The obvious emphasis of the eye in the book of Zechariah is easily measured. The graph below shows the distribution of all occurrences of the word eye or eyes in the Minor Prophets. The massive peak of 17 occurrences corresponds to Book 38, Zechariah!

 





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