Wednesday, April 15, 2015


The LORD is my shepherd….  (Psalm 23:1a)

In John 10, Jesus identified Himself as the shepherd of our souls.  He spoke of His goodness in laying down His life for the sheep, but he also spoke of His greatness saying, I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again.”  (v.17b-18a)  On the cross Jesus gave His life for the sheep, but on the third day, He arose from the tomb. He has ascended and ever lives to make intercession for us.

HE IS A POWERFUL SHEPHERD.  Focus on the first two words, “The LORD.”  Scripture presents Jesus as the King of kings and Lord of lords.  He is the Lord God Almighty, the one who in eternity spoke and the worlds came into existence.  Yet, His power was never more vividly demonstrated than when He reached out a lifeless hand and seized life and pulled it back into Himself.  The earth quaked and strong soldiers fainted and the stone was rolled away and out came Jesus swinging the keys of death and hell. Believe Him when He says, “Because I live, you shall live also.” (John 14:19b) 

HE IS A PERSONAL SHEPHERD.  Look at the first three words.  David says, The LORD is,” not was.  Buddha, Confucius, Mohammed—each one was, but only The Lord Jesus is!  Then consider the first five words, The LORD is my shepherd….”   David didn’t say, “He is a Shepherd to the world” but “He’s mine.”  If He is a Shepherd to no one else, He is to me.  He knows me by name; He cares for me, watches over me, and preserves me. As sheep prone to wander we may wander outside His will, but never outside His care. Jesus knows our trials, tears and temptations. We must be able to claim Him as our personal shepherd.  Can you?

HE IS A PROVIDING SHEPHERD.  The next phrase says,  “I shall not want.”

I SHALL NOT WANT IN LIFE (v.2-3).  Sheep will not lie down when hungry.  Jesus provides green pastures for us—physical and spiritual nourishment.  What refreshment is found beside still waters!  There He restores our soul and gives the strength we need to follow Him.  He leads us in right paths.  The guidance of the Shepherd is stressed here. Thank God for the times we are led through great blessing, but sometimes the right paths are hard paths.  We may be sure the road leads to glory—and that is the main thing!

I SHALL NOT WANT IN DEATH (v.4).  Jesus died such a death that we will never have to die like that.  He trod the winepress alone, that we might walk with us through the valley of the shadow of death.  The Psalmist describes death as a shadow. We need not fear a shadow.  It is just a dark valley we must pass through—but note you go through—light into brief darkness and into the light of eternity! 

I SHALL NOT WANT IN ETERNITY  (v.5-6).  Goodness and mercy in this life brings us into glory and majesty in the world to come.  Christ has a banquet table spread and is waiting for the marriage supper.  How long is forever?  Our home awaits.  Come, Great Shepherd and take your flock to that eternal sheepfold!

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