Summary: We will be going through a two week study of the 23rd Psalm. The 23rd Psalm has everything from Salvation to trust to the reasons for being still before God. It also shows how much God cares about one person.
As my rehab on my shoulder continues my sleep has been off. Late Saturday night I could not sleep but I felt the Lord give me a prompting to do a series on the 23rd Psalm. For the next 2 weeks each devotional will be about this great passage in the Old Testament. Since the Lord gave this to me I would expect us to see some great truths not only for today but for our future hope. I have also laminated the 23rd Psalm for a bookmark and can mail you a copy at No Charge if you like. I believe that the Lord will unveil to us many, many truths out of this one passage.
“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
he restores my soul.
He guides me in paths of righteousness
for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk
through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord
Psalm 23:1 “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.”
I love animals, that is until they turn against me! A number of years ago I remember going through a wildlife preserve in Missouri. As I pulled in through the gate the two doors that shut behind me looked like they were out of the Jurassic Park movie. That should have given me a clue. Once inside it was quite tranquil. I pulled off under a tree and watched a couple of bear cubs play. All of a sudden this horrible banging started on the top of my car. I looked out my left widow and all I could see was feathers. Apparently this ostrich/ raptor was pecking away trying to get inside. Now If I see someone on the side of the road with car trouble I will usually stop. Do you think anyone tried to help me? Families of 10 and 15 in each car drove by laughing, yes laughing.
I floored the pedal and drove out through the emergency entrance. I am not sure how many wild species followed me but hey I was safe!! Calling the insurance company was another matter.
The 23rd Psalm is one of the most read passages in the bible. After the next two weeks I hope you will be able to see why. The 23rd Psalm is an outline for us to live, to be saved and to help bring others into the Kingdom of God.
The 23rd Psalm starts out with “The Lord is my shepherd.” I love to talk to people about their animals. But sheep I needed to do a little research on.
Wikipedia says “Sheep have good hearing, and are sensitive to noise when being handled. Sheep have horizontal slit-shaped pupils, possessing excellent peripheral vision with visual fields of approximately 270° to 320°, sheep can see behind themselves without turning their heads. However, sheep have poor depth perception; shadows and dips in the ground may cause sheep to baulk. Sheep can become stressed when separated from their flock members. Sheep can recognize individual human faces and remember them for years. Sheep are frequently thought of as extremely unintelligent animals. A sheep's herd mentality and quickness to flee and panic in the face of stress often make shepherding a difficult endeavor for the uninitiated “
Is it any wonder that the Lord relates us to sheep and that He is our shepherd? We do not have to be saved for God to be our shepherd. But through God’s love for us and His protection through circumstances and trials our hearts are drawn to the only shepherd that can save us. Left to ourselves we are much like sheep. We flee at a moments notice even when we don’t know where to run. We are skittish and need to be around the flock (friends). A lot of us think we can do this life alone but in the end we will fail miserably if we do.
When I said we do not have to be saved for God to be our shepherd let me put it another way.
Luke 15:3-7 “Then Jesus told them this parable: “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Does he not leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent”