The Gospel Story – Psalm 23

Psalm 23 is such a powerful chapter that speaks to God’s character in just six verses. The Lord is our shepherd. God guides us spiritually, offering us grace, forgiveness, and hope; He sustains us and offers us peace in difficulties; and cares for our needs.

The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need.

Psalm 23:1 NLT

Regardless of your circumstance, God remains the same and His Word is still true. He doesn’t change just because your circumstance has. God will still provide.

He is a Shepherd to us; he cares for us, watches over us, preserves us and cares for our needs.

He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters.

Psalm 23:2 NKJV

We, like sheep, don’t always know what we need and what is best for ourselves, and so we need help from the shepherd.  flies, and famine.The shepherd knows when the sheep needs green pastures, and knows when the sheep needs the still waters. These images are rich with the sense of comfort, care, and rest. The shepherd also knew the good places to make his sheep rest. He faithfully guides the sheep to green pastures. Rest comes because our shepherd deals with our fear, friction, flies, and famine.

He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness, For His name’s sake.

Psalm 23:3 NLT

In the midst of following the shepherd, our strength is renewed, why? Because we get nourished in the process. God’s motives of goodness towards us come from the perfections and goodness of His own nature. 

Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.

Psalm 23:4 NLT

A valley suggests being hedged in and surrounded. Despite every dark association with the idea of the valley of the shadow of death, David could resolutely say this because he was under the care of the LORD his shepherd. The shepherd’s presence does not eliminate the presence of evil, but does eliminate the fear of evil.

You prepare a feast for me in the presence of my enemies. You honor me by anointing my head with oil. My cup overflows with blessings.

Psalm 23:5 NLT

Though we might be surrounded by enemies, we sit down to this table with confidence, knowing that we shall feast in perfect security. The goodness and care suggested by the prepared table is set right in the midst of the presence of our enemies. 

-The table suggest provision

-’Prepare’ suggests foresight and care

-’Before me’ suggests a personal connection

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me, All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever

Psalm 23:6 NKJV

To be in God’s house is to be more than an acquaintance, invited for a day. It is to be with Him forever. This is a calm assurance that we would enjoy the presence of the LORD forever – both in our days on this earth and beyond.

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