And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.…
The news of Christ's birth is a message for an angel to deliver, and it had been news for the best prince on earth to receive. Yet it fell not out amiss that they to whom it first came were shepherds; the news fitted them well. It well agreed to tell shepherds of the yearning of a strange Lamb, such a Lamb as should "take away the sins of the world;" such a Lamb as they might "send to the Ruler of the world for a present" — Isaiah's Lamb. Or, if ye will, to tell shepherds of the birth of a Shepherd. Ezekiel's Shepherd: "Behold, I will raise you a Shepherd," "the Chief Shepherd" (1 Peter 5:4); "the Great Shepherd" (Hebrews 13:20); "the Good Shepherd. that gave His life for His flock" (John 10:11). And so it was not unfit news for the persons to whom it came.
(Bp. Lancelot Andrewes.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.