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Shepherd of the Secure

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Psalm 23

A Psalm of David.

1 The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.

2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:

He leadeth me beside the still waters.

3 He restoreth my soul:

He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

4 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.

5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies:

Thou lanointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

6 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.

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.
First of all, notice what is not said...”If I walk through the valley of the shadow of death
It is expected that difficulties will come

It is important to note that “the valley of the shadow of death” is as much God’s right path for us as the “green pastures” which lie beside “quiet waters.” That is, the Christian life is not always tranquil nor, as we say, a mountain-top experience. God gives us valleys also. It is in the valleys with their trials and dangers that we develop character.

We cannot buy into the mindset that if I am struggling or facing a deep valley that God is mad or that we did something wrong.
Job did nothing wrong
Paul was following the will of God
Jesus was obedient to the Father
And they all faced great difficulties
Difficulties do not equate to displeasure
If this were true then God would have been highly displeased with many in the Bible.
It is often these deep valleys that draw us into a deeper relationship with Him
It is during these times that the sheep learn that the shepherd will care for them
It is during these times that we can learn to trust God
What is the unique problem within the valley? FEAR.
As we saw in Sunday school, fear is a lack of trust, a lack of confidence, not responding according to truth.
According to David that fear comes from what? It comes from separation from the Shepherd
Why does he not fear? The Shepherd is with him
This is similar to the truth that Jesus shares in …Verses 1-8 share that those branches that are attached to the vine bear fruit
In other words, those who are attached are safe and will bear fruit
Those that are not are in danger
He follows that with the passage that greater love hath no man than that he lay his life down for his friends
That is what the shepherd does, he puts his life on the line for the sheep
Jesus gave his life on the cross to save us
The rod and the staff, two different instrument
One , the rod, was like a club that could be used as a weapon to defend the sheep
The staff has the curved end and was used to care for the sheep...
At evening, he would have the sheep pass under the crook one by one so he could count them and examine them.
Warren W. Wiersbe, Be Worshipful, 1st ed., “Be” Commentary Series (Colorado Springs, CO: Cook Communications Ministries, 2004), 96.
The shepherd and the sheep developed a relationship, one that brought peace to the anxious sheep. Gave safety to the defenseless sheep
This is the picture for us as believers
We have a Shepherd that has our best in mind
Not a life of ease, but whats best
A Shepherd that will defend and care for us.
A Shepherd that has the resources to not only guide us to safety but to keep us safe.
We have just one responsibility in that part of our relationship…stay near to him
We are to walk along side the shepherd, not go running on ahead
Or lagging behind
Our responsibility is to be walking in step with the Shepherd
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