What's He Worth To You?

August 13, 2023

David Sorn

How much is True Shepherd, Jesus, worth to you? Is He worth more than 30 pieces of silver?

What's He Worth To You?

August 13, 2023

David Sorn

How much is True Shepherd, Jesus, worth to you? Is He worth more than 30 pieces of silver?

SERMON TRANSCRIPT | Zechariah 11:4-17


Good morning. My name is David Sorn, and I’m the Lead Pastor of Renovation Church.

Before we get into our message this morning, I want to give you a little update on our Building Expansion Timeline.

Here is what will happen over the next few months.

We’re going to (weather depending) have a few more outdoor services in August.

And then, once September starts, we’re going to move all of our services in the gym for the month of September, as it’s going to start to get pretty CHILLY at that 9:00am service especially.

Then, our target Sunday to be back in our building is October 1st.

So just 6 more weeks here, and we’re back in our building!

Now, it’s construction, so anything can happen, but start praying for that October 1st date!

When we get back to the building on October 1st:

Our expanded parking lot should be done.

Our right-in/right-out access to 125th & Lexington should be done.

The inside of our expanded lobby will be done.

And our expanded worship center, will be done.

And so it’s going to be really exciting!

Start praying about who you can bring to hear the Gospel when we get back

Once we get in…we still will have 6 months of construction to go.

At that point, we will be 4 months into our 10-month construction project.

So there will still be some limitations when we get back.

For example, we’ll have only 5 kids rooms (many of them smaller than before) when we get back.

And so kids 10 & up will be in the worship center with us for a few months until we open up our massive expanded kids wing with 11 kids rooms!

And that is projected to happen in early January.

And then we’re hoping to finish our adult & administrative wing (with our Renovation U classes, conference rooms, new parent child room, library, offices, etc.) by Easter, which is March 31st.

So, that’s what’s happening.

There will be challenges ahead. It won’t always be easy or comfortable, but comfort is not our aim as disciples.

We aim to glorify God.

As a church, we’re here to keep our eyes, not on comfort, but on our mission as a church: Which is to follow Jesus and help others do the same.

SO we will follow Him no matter what it looks like, amen!

But we’re pumped to finally be back in our space 6 weeks on October 1st. it’s going to be good!


This morning, as we jump into the book of Zechariah, we’re going to see a familiar story.

It’s a story that echoes all throughout the Scriptures.

And like a Drama, it unfolds in 5 Acts, or 5 parts.

And we’re going to see Zechariah prophesy today about perhaps the most famous version of this 5-Act Story…the coming of Christ…and how people will react to it.

If you’re new this summer, Zechariah was a prophet who ministered about 520 years before Jesus came to earth.

Let’s take a look at our passage

(PAGE 651 / App)

We are in week 11 of 14 of our Zechariah series, so we’re on chapter 11 today.

We’re going to start at verse 4.

(Zechariah 11:4-8) – NIV

4 This is what the Lord my God says: “Shepherd the flock marked for slaughter. 5 Their buyers slaughter them and go unpunished. Those who sell them say, ‘Praise the Lord, I am rich!’ Their own shepherds do not spare them. 6 For I will no longer have pity on the people of the land,” declares the Lord. “I will give everyone into the hands of their neighbors and their king. They will devastate the land, and I will not rescue anyone from their hands.”

7 So I shepherded the flock marked for slaughter, particularly the oppressed of the flock. Then I took two staffs and called one Favor and the other Union, and I shepherded the flock. 8 In one month I got rid of the three shepherds.

The flock detested me, and I grew weary of them

Okay, what’s happening here?

God is once again asking Zechariah to enact a drama here.

And God is telling Zechariah to literally go shepherd a flock of sheep.

Zechariah is going to play the part of a shepherd to illustrate what life will be like for the True Shepherd, Jesus Christ, when He comes to earth.

It’s dramatic prophecy that will have 5 Acts.

And you can see these 5 Acts listed in our app under “5 Acts to the Story” on the summer services tab.

I encourage you to look at that is it will help you take notes and help you follow along.

And we could name Act 1, this: God Comes in Kindness as a shepherd.

That’s how God came in the Garden of Eden…or to his people leading them into the promised Land.

And that’s how Jesus will come 500 years after Zechariah: As a shepherd

And verse 7 shows us that the True Shepherd will shepherd, particularly, the oppressed.

And that is what Jesus did.

He ministered to the poor, the prostitutes, the blind, and the deaf.

In part because they were humble enough to believe in Him.


But many people aren’t humble enough to follow the shepherd, and that leads us to Act 2 of the familiar story.

You’ll see in your App, that Act 2 is called: We Don’t Want The Shepherd

We are offered the goodness of God, but we reject it.

Adam & Eve are in paradise, but they reject it

Over and over again in the OT, God sends his prophets to the people, and how do the people respond? They reject them!

And the Son of God (THE SON OF GOD!!) Jesus, is walking on our earth, but the Jewish leaders reject Him.

Look at verse 8, Zechariah (representing the future True Shepherd Jesus) says “The flock detested me.”

And they did.

They nailed the Son of God to a cross and murdered Him.

If that isn’t detesting the shepherd, I don’t know what is.

And my friends, are we all that different today?

In Act one, Jesus calls out to us in love, as the good Shepherd…saying, “Come to me, my yoke is easy, my burden is light. I will give you rest”

And yet, in the depths of most of our hearts, is a belief that says, “If I truly give my all to Jesus, that won’t bring the freedom or happiness or peace that I really crave…

We’re afraid that surrender to the shepherd will feel more like a burden than freedom.

And so ACT 2 happens in our lives, we don’t truly want the shepherd to fully shepherd us.


Why? Why do we think this way?

This is Act 3: Notice in your app, it says that ACT 3 is: Our Choices Reveal What We Think He’s Worth:

In other words, if you look underneath our refusal to surrender to God, you’ll find the painful truth that we don’t think that He’s worth our surrender.

Oooo, that’s a hard word.

But it’s true, isn’t it??

Adam & Eve have everything in the Garden. EVERYTHING!

And yet they don’t think it’s enough.

And God now prophesies through Zechariah, that years after Zechariah, people won’t even find the Son of God as worthy when He comes to our planet.

Let’s look at verses 9-14

(Zechariah 11:9-14) – NIV

9 and said, “I will not be your shepherd. Let the dying die, and the perishing perish. Let those who are left eat one another’s flesh.”

10 Then I took my staff called Favor and broke it, revoking the covenant I had made with all the nations. 11 It was revoked on that day, and so the oppressed of the flock who were watching me knew it was the word of the Lord.

12 I told them, “If you think it best, give me my pay; but if not, keep it.” So they paid me thirty pieces of silver.

13 And the Lord said to me, “Throw it to the potter”—the handsome price at which they valued me! So I took the thirty pieces of silver and threw them to the potter at the house of the Lord.

14 Then I broke my second staff called Union, breaking the family bond between Judah and Israel.

Okay, so remember Zechariah is dramatically representing the True Shepherd who will come, Jesus.

And he’s saying that if the sheep are not going to follow Him, then His covenant with them will be over.

He won’t be their shepherd anymore

And so as he is ending his time with them (this is verse 12), he says, “If you think it best, give me my pay.”

In other words, I was your shepherd, so what was I worth to you?

And they pay him 30 pieces of silver.

Which is not a lot.

But, this is a very significant number in the Bible for a lot of reasons!

For one, if you go way back to Exodus in the Bible, you’ll see that in the Ancient Near East, that if a slave was killed in their culture, a person was owed 30 pieces of silver.”

And so Zechariah has faithfully shepherded the sheep, like God instructed him too for this prophetic drama, and they pay him 30 pieces of silver, the slave’s wage…not much.

And it’s a prophecy too, so it’s like saying, “What will the True Shepherd, the Messiah be worth to the sheep when he comes?”

And we find out in the New Testament, because the night before Jesus’ crucifixion, one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, agrees to betray Jesus to the Jewish leaders.

And Judas says to the leaders, “What are you willing to give me for him?”

In other words, “What’s Jesus worth to you?”

This is the quintessential question of this chapter, by the way: “What’s He worth to you?” (x3)

And the Jewish leaders respond by saying, “30 pieces of silver”

The exact same amount that Zechariah was paid when he represented Jesus in the prophetic drama 500 years earlier.

And now look closer at our text.

Look at verse 13

13 And the Lord said to me, “Throw it to the potter”—the handsome price at which they valued me! So I took the thirty pieces of silver and threw them to the potter at the house of the Lord.

And do you know what happens after Judas betrays Jesus, and Jesus dies?

Matthew 27 tells us that Judas felt such remorse, that he threw (just like Zechariah) his 30 pieces of silver into the temple.

And the Jewish leaders didn’t want blood money in the temple, so they bought a “Potter’s field”

I mean, the fulfilled prophecies here are just incredible.

But don’t miss the larger point: Over and over again, the people are missing out on the loving leadership of the Shepherd because they haven’t valued Him rightly.

How valuable is God to you?

What’s He worth to you? (x2)

Is He just someone you call out to if you’re in trouble?

Someone you only go back to when you really mess up?

Is He someone you follow only if it’s convenient for you?

What if God calls you to self-denial, or to do something that’s hard?

What’s He worth to you?

See, you’ll only go deeper into God, and thus deeper into His loving care, if you’re willing to follow Him into hard places.

And you’ll only do that, if you understand just how worthy He is in the first place!


But unfortunately, for most of human history, we have vastly underestimated how worthy God is, and thus, we always seem to end up in Act Four of the old familiar story.

This is how I would title Act Four: Our supposed freedom is actually bondage and death.

Adam & Eve think that by getting out from under God, that they’re going to get Garden of Eden 2.0 (“now w/ bonus fruit!”, but by not trusting God, they ended up cast out of the Garden and enduring the pain of the world.

The Jewish leaders of Jesus’ day, think they’ve found freedom from Jesus by murdering Him

But you can’t keep a good man down…

And they missed freedom, because they killed freedom, and so their supposed freedom ends up being their destruction.

And what happens in history, as judgment for rejecting the Son of God, the Romans come to Jerusalem and destroy everything…even the 2nd temple that was rebuilt in Zechariah’s time 500 years earlier.

And we see warning of this in Zechariah 11

As always happens in the story, God will not force anyone to love Him.

But after a time, if you continue to reject Him, He will remove His hand of protection, and He’ll allow the pain of judgment to freely come.

That’s verse 9.

He’s saying, “If you reject me, I will not be your shepherd anymore. Let the dying die, and the perishing perish.”

And so hear the word of the Lord, hear the story of the Lord as it has unfolded countless times in this 5-Act Drama throughout history:

If you don’t see the worth of the True shepherd…

And instead, you choose to go your own way, and live your own life…it will not, it can not, lead anywhere good.

It leads to bondage and pain and death every time.

This is very serious:

Because listen, if you say, “I know God wants me to stay married, but honestly, He’s not worth me not pursuing this affair…I’m going to have an affair.

If you devalue His worth, His truth as the Good shepherd who knows what’s best for you…

…if you do that…it will not, it can not, lead to anything good.

It will lead to the crushing of your family…every single time.

If you say, “I know God wants me to change what I do with my money, OR, how I raise my kids, OR, the career I’m in….

… “but I’m not going to do it. It’s too hard. Or, I know better…”

If you devalue His worth, and His wisdom.

And you treat this (hold up Bible) like it’s worth 30 pieces of silver…

It will not go better for you.

And what happens to us as we seek supposed freedom away from the shepherd…

Is the surprising and unexpected turn of Act 5 of the drama:


Here’s how you can name ACT 5: The leader after the shepherd is always worse than you can imagine

We think that we’re getting our freedom from the shepherd…doing things our own way, but in history, people always end up under the terrible leadership of someone else when they reject the shepherd.

For example:

The Jews 100 years before Zechariah don’t want to follow God, but do they get freedom?

No, they get bondage under another leader… they end up being pulled in chains by Nebuchadnezzar to Babylon

The Pharisees don’t want to follow Jesus, but by casting him off, do they get freedom?

No, in history, they end up destroying each other into factions and end up having to submit to exile by Caesar

Adam & Eve think they’re getting freedom by biting the fruit, but they end up following the ways of Satan himself.

This is what the final 3 verses of this prophecy are about.

And most scholars believe this is a prophecy about the AntiChrist in the end times

(Zechariah 11:15-17) – NIV

15 Then the Lord said to me, “Take again the equipment of a foolish shepherd. 16 For I am going to raise up a shepherd over the land who will not care for the lost, or seek the young, or heal the injured, or feed the healthy, but will eat the meat of the choice sheep, tearing off their hooves.

17 “Woe to the worthless shepherd,
who deserts the flock!
May the sword strike his arm and his right eye!
May his arm be completely withered,
his right eye totally blinded!”

In the end of days, the Bible says that this antichrist will lead the masses astray.

He’ll look like a better shepherd, but he’ll be worse than anyone could ever imagine.

Paul speaks much about the antichrist in 2 Thessalonians

(2 Thessalonians 2:9-12) – NIV

The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10 and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.

Paul says that in the end of days, people will refuse to love the truth.

The truth that God lays out for humankind in His word.

Instead they will want to delight in wickedness.

But in their pursuit of pleasure and wickedness, they end up deceived by a wicked leader who approves of their wickedness.

And the leaders uses their desire for wickedness, to put them under his own evil leadership.

And this same pattern is still happening in our day, as it did in the old days, and will again in the future.

Many today even feel like they’ve thrown off God, and that they’re doing their own thing.

But look at the story…

It’s always the same.

Act 5 always comes after Act 4

We always end up following someone else!

Maybe it’s the latest social media influencer teaching about sexuality or relationships or morality.

The latest political leader.

Or I see people who say they’ve deconstructed their faith and walked away from Christ, and yet they’re religiously following the teachings of the latest author who taught them to do

We’re always following someone.

But oh my friend, don’t follow any other leader but King Jesus…

Because they can’t lead you where He can lead you.

They promise a lighter load in letting you live how you want, but hidden in their load is the delayed pain of sin, and the aftereffects of depression, and anxiety, and more.

They offer you chocolate-covered hooks.

Now is the time to turn back to the Good Shepherd Jesus.

His grace is always there.

He loves you just the same.

Like the father of the prodigal Son, He stands there now, waiting for you to return to His goodness.

And for those of you who have never trusted in Christ.

Know that He can save you today!

That’s why He came.

His love for you is so deep and so wide that He literally came to earth to give His life for you on the cross.

In fact, He was dying in your place, taking the punishment for your sins.

And the Bible says that if you believe in that, you can be forgiven, you can have a relationship with Him, and you can have eternal life in heaven.


And look at me, it doesn’t matter how far gone you are.

Or how much you’ve sinned.

Or how much you’ve ignored Him.

Or if you thought, in your pride, that you were so good, that you never needed Him until now.

It doesn’t matter, he can forgive you.

But that offer won’t last forever.

At some point, His hand of protection will move, and your life will be over, and at that point, it will be too late.

The only way to stop it is to believe in Jesus Christ, and let the judgment come for Him on the cross instead.

And I want to give you an opportunity to do that now.

Let’s all close our eyes and bow our heads.

If that’s you, I want you, stand up where you are.

The Bible tells us that in this moment we believe in our hearts and confess with our mouths.

Repeat after me

Dear God

I confess to you, that I have sinned against you.

But God I believe, that you sent your Son Jesus, to take my place

And God I thank you, for forgiving my sins.

And now I commit, to following you, with my life.

Copyright: David Sorn
Renovation Church in Blaine, MN

You may use this material all you like! We only ask that you do not charge a fee and that you quote the source and not say it is your own.