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Jesus Christ Our Shepherd

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Communion  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  39:55
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Introduction

In Isaiah 53 as the Suffering Servant is being described, a statement is made about all mankind.
Isaiah 53:6 says this.
Isaiah 53:6 NKJV
6 All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
When Jesus was on this earth He was moved with compassion for people because they were like sheep having no shepherd.
All through Scripture we find this analogy.
We are sheep.
Psalm 95:7 says that “He is our God, and we are the people of His pasture, and the sheep of His hand.”
Psalm 100:3 says “know that the Lord, He is God; it is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people and the sheep of His pasture.”
We are sheep.
And yet, there is another truth that Scripture makes clear.
We are sheep who wander, who get lost, who need rescue.
The only solution for a lost sheep is to be found by a loving shepherd.
If you are lost and wandering this morning, if you are in need of rescue, I have good news for you.
There is a shepherd.
There is a shepherd who seeks lost sheep!
There is a shepherd who rescues, who protects, who provides, and cares for His sheep!
The Shepherd’s name is Jesus.
Sheep need a shepherd.
If we are sheep and Jesus is the shepherd, there is only one conclusion.
We need Jesus.
As we think about Jesus Christ as our shepherd there are three promises we must cling to.
As our Shepherd, Jesus meets every need.
Promise #1…

1. He Is Lord v. 1a

This first verse in Psalm 23 is all about emphasis.
The LORD is my Shepherd. I shall not want.
It is those first two words I want us to focus on as we begin.
The Lord.
In most Bible translations the word Lord here is going to be in all caps.
Why?
Because it is the name of God.
Jehovah, Yahweh, God the Father.
He is our shepherd.
What exactly does it mean for the Lord to be our shepherd?
To answer that we need to talk briefly about who God is.
The Bible is God’s revelation of Himself to mankind.
Look with me at just a glimpse of Who He has revealed Himself to be.
The book of Revelation begins and ends with a similar statement.
Revelation 1:8; 22:13.
Revelation 1:8; 22:13
Revelation 1:8 NKJV
8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,” says the Lord, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”
Revelation 22:13 NKJV
13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last.”
The picture in these verses is of the all-encompassing power, majesty, and glory of God.
He is the beginning and the ending, He always has been and always will be!
Isaiah records God’s Word’s to His people and this is what God says. Isaiah 46:9-10.
Isaiah 46:9-10
Isaiah 46:9–10 NKJV
9 Remember the former things of old, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like Me, 10 Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things that are not yet done, Saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, And I will do all My pleasure,’
Nothing compares to God! He is unlike any other!
He declares what will take place. He does what pleases Him.
Now I want to look at some interactions between God and men.
I am going to go through these really quickly, so it might be easier to sit and listen instead of trying to turn to these. They are listed in the notes and you can look at them later if you want.
Okay. Here we go.
Genesis 15:1, 7; 17:1; 26:24; 28:13, 15; 31:13; 35:11; 46:3; Exodus 6:6-8.
15:1 Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.
15:7 I am the LORD, who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldeans, to give you this land to inherit it.
17:1 I am Almighty God; walk before Me and be blameless.
26:24 I am the God of your father Abraham; do not fear, for I am with you. I will bless you and multiply your descendants for My servant Abraham's sake.
28:13 I am the LORD God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac; the land on which you lie I will give to you and your descendants.
28:15 Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have spoken to you.
31:13 I am the God of Bethel
35:11 I am God Almighty. Be fruitful and multiply
46:3 “I am God, the God of your father; do not fear to go down to Egypt, for I will make of you a great nation there.
Exodus 6:6–8 NKJV
6 Therefore say to the children of Israel: ‘I am the Lord; I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, I will rescue you from their bondage, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments. 7 I will take you as My people, and I will be your God. Then you shall know that I am the Lord your God who brings you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. 8 And I will bring you into the land which I swore to give to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; and I will give it to you as a heritage: I am the Lord.’ ”
What do these verses tell us about God?
He is faithful, He is all powerful, He keeps His promises, He defends, He rewards, He redeems, and rescues, and He supplies every need!
That is the Lord who is our Shepherd.
Is He your Lord?
He is the Lord, is He your Lord?
Have we submitted ourselves to him?
Are we following His leading and direction?
We don’t make Him Lord, we submit to His Lordship.
This all-powerful, all-knowing, good, kind, gracious, and loving heavenly Father has so much to offer.
Have we surrendered to Him?
There can be no growth where this is no surrender.
The process of sanctification demands a continual submission to the Lordship of Christ.
If we are not letting go of our will and embracing the Will of God, we are living in rebellion!
He is Lord. Let’s act like it.
Sing with me
#105 “He Is Lord”
He is Lord.
That’s promise #1.
He is Lord, we submit to His Lordship.
All those who submit to His Lordship have made a discovery.
That discovery is promise #2…

2. He Is The Good Shepherd v. 1b

We have said, “The LORD is my Shepherd. I shall not want.”
Now we change the emphasis once again.
The Lord is MY Shepherd. I shall not want.
Is He your Shepherd?
We just dealt with the submission of the believer to the Lord.
Now we are dealing with what being a believer means.
The promises found in Psalm 23 are for those who are the sheep of God.
How do we become His sheep?
This deals with salvation.
David uses a possessive here.
The Lord is my shepherd.
Not the shepherd my shepherd.
I titled this point, “He is the good shepherd.”
That idea comes from John 10.
In this passage Jesus explains how the true shepherd calls His sheep by name.
They follow Him because they know His voice.
He describes Himself as the door of sheep, it is only as we enter through Him that we are saved.
Look at verse 11. John 10:11.
John 10:11
John 10:11 NKJV
11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.
He lays down His life for the sheep!
He knows His sheep and they know Him.
Later, near the end of the chapter, Jesus says that He gives His sheep eternal life, they will never perish, they are secure.
He is the good shepherd. He gave His life for the sheep.
Go with me to John 3:16-18.
John 3:16-18
John 3:16–18 NKJV
16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. 18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
The requirement for receiving eternal life is belief in Jesus Christ.
When we believe we are not condemned.
What is it that we must believe?
According to 1 Cor. 15:1-4, we believe that He died for our sins, that He was buried, and that He rose again.
If we believe that, we are saved.
We have become His sheep.
Now we can say with David, the Lord is my shepherd.
Salvation comes by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone.
Have you placed your faith in Jesus?
Sing with me
#458 “Gentle Shepherd”
He is the good shepherd.
Promise #1. He is Lord.
Promise #2. He is the Good Shepherd.
Promise #3…

3. He Satisfies v. 1c

The final emphasis in this verse.
The Lord is my Shepherd. I SHALL NOT WANT.
Notice how this phrase is worded.
The Lord is my Shepherd. I shall not want.
Not cannot want.
It reflects an active choice of the will.
David is making the choice to be satisfied.
When the Lord is our shepherd we choose not to want.
Why? Because the shepherd makes us lie down in Green pastures and leads us beside the still waters.
We will get to those verses in the months ahead.
Because He is Lord of heaven and earth, our shepherd provides all we need.
Are we Satisfied?
This deals with contentment.
He is Lord. He is the good Shepherd.
He provides all our needs.
Have we decided not to want?
There is also a causal element to this.
Because the Lord is our Shepherd, we shall not want.
Look at what Paul said in Philippians 4:11-12.
Philippians 4:11-12
Philippians 4:11–12 NKJV
11 Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: 12 I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.
Contentment, satisfaction in the Lord is something we must learn.
How do we learn contentment?
Paul learned it through experience.
He experienced humility and advancement, fullness and hunger, need and abundance.
Have our experiences led us to be satisfied in Christ?
It is our response to them that determines our satisfaction.
Need can drive us to Jesus or it can drive us to self.
Am I satisfied in Jesus?!
If I am not satisfied. Maybe He isn’t my Shepherd, in which case I must believe in Him.
If I am not satisfied. Maybe I am not submitting to His Lordship. In which case I must surrender.
Satisfaction is possible for the believer.
Where is that satisfaction found?
Go with me to Matthew 6:25-34.
Matthew 6:25-34
Matthew 6:25–34 NKJV
25 “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? 28 “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; 29 and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
Satisfaction comes when we rest in the sovereignty of God!
He knows what we need!
When we seek Him first, when we pursue righteousness, He supplies every need.
Sing with me
#531 “Satisfied”
Jesus satisfies my longings, through His blood I now am saved.
Turn with me to 1 Corinthians 11:23-32
This is a time for believers to remember the price that was paid. To be reminded of the penalty of sin. Taking part of communion does not save you. This is simply a way for us to be reminded of what Christ has done. If you know the Lord as savior this morning, please join us in bread and juice as we remember Jesus Christ. These are only symbols, they represent the body and blood of our Savior. Examination – verses 26-32
1 Corinthians 11:26–32 NKJV
26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death till He comes. 27 Therefore whoever eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. 28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread and drink of the cup. 29 For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks judgment to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. 30 For this reason many are weak and sick among you, and many sleep. 31 For if we would judge ourselves, we would not be judged. 32 But when we are judged, we are chastened by the Lord, that we may not be condemned with the world.

OBSERVANCE OF COMMUNION

The Bread (His Body) vv. 23-24 “Near To The Heart Of God” (chorus)
1 Corinthians 11:23–24 NKJV
23 For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you: that the Lord Jesus on the same night in which He was betrayed took bread; 24 and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me.”
O Jesus blest Redeemer
Sent from the heart of God
Hold us who wait before Thee
Near to the heart of God
The Cup (His Blood) v. 25 “All That Thrills My Soul” (chorus)
1 Corinthians 11:25 NKJV
25 In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.”
All that thrills my soul is Jesus
He is more than life to me
And the fairest of ten thousand
In my blessed Lord I see

Conclusion

The LORD is MY Shepherd. I SHALL NOT want.
Personal: This means I have meaning and purpose because I am following my master and Lord. I am content with what He provides. Commitment here may look like choosing to be content and satisfied.
Relationships: When I have a destination others can be caught up in the current of my obedience. Our destination is wherever the shepherd leads. A commitment here might look like actively seeking God’s guidance and direction.
Parenting: We are following our shepherd. This means that His goals for our children are ours. What is His goal for our children? For them to be raised in the training and instruction of Christ! Teaching them to be satisfied in Christ and with what He provides is a vital lesson. Commitment here could be making a plan to intentionally teach our children about Christ.
Marriage: With the Lord as our Shepherd we have direction and focus in life. This enables us to invite our spouse to join us on a journey of obedience and joy. When we are satisfied in Christ, we learn that He is the one who meets our needs, not our spouse. This enables us to let them off the hook and simply enjoy pursuing Christ together. If your spouse is unsaved it takes the pressure off and can open doors for the gospel. A commitment here is finding our ultimate satisfaction in Christ.
To be satisfied in Christ we must first know Him.
Have I trusted in Jesus?
Once we know Christ we must submit to His Lordship.
Have I surrendered my will to Christ?
Satisfaction demands that I be aware of what Christ has provided.
I find this in His Word and through self-examination.
As we rest in the sovereignty of God may we be satisfied in Him.
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