The most-read passage of Scripture is Psalm 23. It is the earliest psalm written in first-person language. God moved on David’s heart with very familiar terms. David was an experienced shepherd. David knew the character and behavior of sheep. David knew sheep are instinctively more reliant upon a leader than any other animal in the world. Sheep feel very secure in groups of five, six, or more because being in a group discourages predators. Sheep will drink from standing water or shallow water much more often than fast-running water. The noise from fast-running water disturbs them. Also, unfamiliar water sources are not a risk they are willing to take. Still water appeals to their quiet nature. If an unsheared sheep falls in or wades out too deep while drinking, his wool will take on water. That will pull him under and drown him. Sheep are very wise animals. They generally will follow only a shepherd who provides, guides, and protects them. They will know and follow his voice. How much more personally could God have touched David’s life than to inspire him to pen the words in Psalm 23?
VERSE 1: “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.” I understand I need to be completely dependent upon the Lord for all my provision. He sees ahead of me in every circumstance I encounter. His wisdom and understanding are perfect and is as precious as rubies. He has the power and authority to provide, guide, and protect me as a completely helpless sheep being stalked by a predator. What do I have to fear? I do not need to fear what man or Satan can do to me if my trust is completely in the Shepherd and His provision. Nothing can separate me from Him or His presence; absolutely nothing.
VERSE 2: “He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: He leadeth me beside the still waters.” The valley the shepherd chooses for his sheep is filled with peace. It’s shady; vegetation grows freely. The tender, green grass leads to the creek. It looks so inviting. A good shepherd’s sheep are happy and healthy from grazing on quality grass. In the valley, pure water collects from the snows which run down the mountainsides. The shepherd knows valleys are the last areas to be affected during a dry season. How about the dry and rough times in our lives? If we lie down where our Shepherd leads us, it will be very comfortable. We can calmly allow God to refresh and renew us before we travel on. What a difference it makes in our lives! My Great Shepherd understands me and knows how to furnish me with life-sustaining water so peacefully. He’s able to protect me from drowning in the cares of life. How peaceful and soothing is the soft running water in the brook He chooses.
Continue Reading with Magzter GOLD
Log-in, if you are already a subscriber
Get unlimited access to thousands of curated premium stories and 5,000+ magazines
READ THE ENTIRE ISSUE