In church this morning (I visited Sold Rock Christian Fellowship in Templeton with a friend) the pastor read Mark 14:27. I have always found this passage to be rather ominous be it Zechariah's original proclamation of the concept or Christ's invoking it centuries later. Usually the way it strikes me is not in its original context of that specific circumstance to which Christ referred when He uttered those words nor Zechariah's specific object of that action. Rather, I find myself thinking about it in the more general context of it that timelessly applies to how followers respond when their leadership is removed from command. It is not only ominous but equally useful to remember if one is ever in a conflict where smiting shepherds is both within the rules of that time and place as well as useful towards achieving resolution of said conflict.
"... for it is written, 'I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered."