I thought I'd had a completely original notion when coming up with 'the Shepherd' reference to the persona of Jesus in the CrossGate books, but this very day I discovered, not to my chagrin, but to my delight actually, that Christ, as 'the Shepherd' appeared in scripture! Not in the Cannon, and included in the New Testament, but in a 'Lost Gospel of the Bible,' a book called 'Hermas.' (I've been reading these 'Lost Books' for a while now)
In Hermas II, 1-3 it reads:
When I had prayed at home, and was sat down upon the bed, a certain man came in to me with a reverend look, in the habit of a shepherd, clothed with a white cloak, having his bag upon his back, and his staff in his hand, and saluted me.
I returned his salutation, and immediately he sat down by me, and said unto me, 'I am sent by that venerable messenger, that I should dwell with thee all the remaining days of thy life.'
But I thought that he was come to try me, and said unto him, 'Who are you? For I know to whom I am committed.' He said unto me, 'do you not know me?' I answered no. 'I am,' said he, 'that shepherd to whose care you are delivered.'
Had I made this discovery in other than some form of scripture, I may not have been quite as giddy over it. But, being from 'inspired writings,' I find I am - more inspired myself! Justified, confirmed, whatever you like to call it. Thus, even if not in an 'accepted' New Testament book, The Shepherd indeed has a First Century reference as Christ himself! Whoo-hoo, how about that! Amen?!