My Shepherd - Part III
A Psalm of David. The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: He leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: Thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: And I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
Let’s look at what we had figured out already…
One of the most quoted passages in history…
No scriptures in all the scripture has provided more peace and comfort in all situations then the 23rd Psalm!
When we look at the 23rd Psalm we find three specific things that the psalmist is trying to convey.
Verse 1-3 is written in the 3rd person - “He maketh me…” “He leadeth me...”
David is talking about the Shepherd.
Verse 4 is written in the 1st person - David moves from talking about to talking to God. “You are with me...” “You comfort me...”
David is talking to his friend.
Verse 5-6 moves from outside to inside.
Goes from green pastures to prepared tables
From outside (word/society) to inside (home)
First part is in the field
Second part is in the valley
Third part is in His tabernacle/home
Let’s look at the Psalm from three perspectives
As a shepherd, God gives direction
As a friend, God gives us protection
As a host, God gives us provision
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: Thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: And I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
The Shepherds Provision
Note: change of metaphor - we are not longer in the field - we are no longer in The Valley but now are inside
Kings table = leather mat spread on the floor of a tent
Great dinning hall OR a bedroom
Place where generals and governors meet OR private use
Attended by servants OR no one
6 times the word is translated alter
So whatever table you need, God supplies it for you!
As our relationship with Him grows from something we simply can talk about...
“Oh God is good… all the the time!”
“God is my healer...”
I’m teaching a bible study to a group that I have noticed they can only talk about God in the 3rd person.
From a ‘I know he can” perspective.
To someone we can talk to...
God you ARE my strength!
Jesus you ARE my hope!
Most significant thing I find is the table does not have to be your table...
Most of the time it is your table prepared perfectly by your host, Jesus...
BUT remember it is also a table generals and governors come to.
The phrase “in the presents of my enemies” is significant.
The picture in our mind is the guy in the valley
Darkness all around
In the darkness lurks all manor of evil and danger
BUT the shepherd has prepared a place of perfect peace
We are seated at a table heavy with every good thing and no enemy can come close...
Not only what the phrase means.
Rather it is a glimpse into the war room of the enemies!
Anoint my head with oil
To make fat, refresh, clean (after sacrifice has been made), made to prosper, made trustful
Cup runneth over
Old picture of a sumptuous table in danger
The blessing of good things
Desire to live and be righteous!
Not the mercy we think of: †[חֶמְלָה S2551 TWOT676a GK2799] n.f. compassion, mercy, of י׳ (strictly Inf. form
Enhanced Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew and English Lexicon (I. חֶ֫סֶד)
†I. חֶ֫סֶד 1. kindness of men towards men, in doing favours and benefits 1 S 20:15; 2 S 16:17 ψ 141:5 Pr 19:22; 20:6;
This is the favor the world to the people of God!
When the shepherd becomes the host...
Many know him as the shepherd, leader
Many know him as the protecter
Many know him as the provider
He wants to be your host.
20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
When the guest becomes the host...
Only way that happens is a switch of ownership!
Weather it is the field, valley or tabernacle, they are all prepared places for you!