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I. A picture of sheep under the care of a conscientious shepherd.
A. Remember that David is writing this entire psalm from the standpoint of a sheep.
1. He is reflecting on the entire year’s activities of the flock.
2. The winter and spring months spent in the pen on the ranch and the summer and fall months spent enjoying the tablelands.
3. As the Shepherd cares for their sheep they develop great affection and devotion for their sheep. The bond between the shepherd and his sheep is strong.
4. The care that the sheep received throughout the year has resulted in them completely trusting their shepherd.
5. Sheep that are well taken care of will follow their shepherd wherever he leads them.
B. The sheep are a picture of health and contentment.
1. In the very beginning we established that you could determine how good the shepherd was by looking at the sheep.
2. The sheep thrive because they are under responsible and loving care.
3. The sheep are well fed and are free from disease and parasites.
4. Having such complete care causes the sheep to be content. They have no desire to have their situation change.
5. They have no reason to fear because the shepherd has proven himself time and time again. Sheep under a bad shepherd will seek opportunities to change their situations.
C. The management of the shepherd determines how beneficial the sheep will be for the Land.
1. A flock of sheep that is mismanaged can literally turn lush pasture into a vast wasteland.
2. A flock of well managed sheep will prove to be of great benefit to the land.
a. Their manure is the most beneficial and balanced of any type of domestic livestock.
b. No other livestock will eat such a variety of different plants and weeds.
c. The sheep’s habit of always seeking the highest spots causes the fertility of the lower pastures to be spread to the higher less productive spots.
3. In ancient writing sheep were referred to as “those of the golden hooves” because of the way they could benefit the land.
4. A well managed flock of
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