Psalm 23: The Lord is My Shepherd
1. 23rd Psalm is probably the most quoted & read chapter of the Bible.
2. I received this outline (minus scriptures) along with this comment: “This is an eye opener; some probably never thought nor looked at this Psalm in this way, even though they say it over and over again.”
3. Do we understand its meaning & encouragement? Do we live in the divine blessings it honors? Is the Lord truly our Shepherd?
The Lord is my Shepherd: That’s Relationship!
1. Jesus is the Good Shepherd, Jno. 10:1-14, 27-29.
-His sheep hear & know his voice & follow him; do not follow stranger.
2. Who is your shepherd? Do you hear, know & follow word of Jesus?
I shall not want: That’s Supply!
1. The Lord has great abundance, Eph. 1:3; Phil. 4:19.
2. He supplies our needs…a matter of faith, Matt. 6:33-34.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures: That’s Rest! Ezek.34:11-16,23-25
1. Rest for the soul from sin, guilt, shame, Matt. 11:28-30.
2. Rest from the trouble of persecution, 2 Ths. 1:6-7.
He leads me beside the still waters: That’s Refreshment!
1. Still (calm) waters (cf. Mk. 4:37-41).
2. Living water (everlasting life), Jno. 4:10-14 (Isa. 12:3; 55:1-2); 7:37-38.
3. Water of life, Rev. 21:6 (22:1): “let him who thirsts come…whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely” (22:17).
He restores my soul: That’s Healing!
1. Forgiveness & fellowship, Lk. 15:17-18, 20.
2. Restores of repentance & conversion, cf. Lk. 22:32 (Acts 3:19; 26:18).
He leads me in the paths of righteousness: That’s Guidance!
1. By the Shepherd’s voice, Jno. 10:3-4.
2. Word of truth, Psa. 119:105; Jno. 6:68; 14:6.
For His name’s sake: That’s Purpose!
1. God has prepared our path, Eph. 2:10 (1 Jno. 1:7).
2. We are His & accomplish His purposes when we are faithful to Him, Rom. 12:1-2; 14:7-8.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death: That’s Testing!
1. Trials of life & death are common to all, 1 Cor. 10:13.
2. Trials of life can mature & strengthen us in faith, Jas. 1:2-3.
3. In Christ, the terror of death gives way to joyful hope, 1 Co. 15:54-57.
I will fear no evil: That’s Protection!
1. Protected from sin (a way of escape), 1 Cor. 10:13.
2. Protected through watchful vigilance, 1 Pet. 5:8-9.
3. Fear no evil: Protected by the God of all grace & power, 1 Pet. 5:10 (Psa. 27:1-3; Isa. 41:8-10).
For You are with me: That’s Faithfulness!
1. God is our faithful companion, Heb. 13:5-6.
2. Cast your burden on the Lord, Psa. 55:22 (1 Pet. 5:6-7).
3. Fellowship for the faithful with the Faithful One!
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me: That’s Discipline!
1. Allusion is to the shepherd’s crook or staff; Used to reclaim the weak & straying & used to number & direct his flock (Mic. 7:14).
2. The Lord’s discipline affirms His love for use & His presence with us as it trains us in righteous living, Heb. 12:6, 10-11.
3. His discipline is applied through His word (2 Tim. 3:16-17).
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies: That’s Hope!
1. Our God is greater than the enemy, 1 Jno. 4:4.
2. Christ rules in midst of enemies; offer willing service (Psa. 110:2-3).
3. Hope doesn’t disappoint, Rom. 5:4-5 (1 Pet. 1:3; Heb. 6:19).
You anoint my head with oil: That’s Consecration!
1. Fullness of blessings refresh the soul of those dedicated to God.
2. Christians are dedicated to Christ & set apart from the world to be holy (saints), 1 Cor. 1:2; cf. Jno. 17:17.
My cup runs over: That’s Abundance!
1. God exceeds & excels our requests & thoughts! Eph. 3:20
2. The blessings of God to the faithful are limitless, Mal. 3:10.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: That’s Blessing!
1. The certainty of faith, cf. Matt. 6:31-34.
2. God’s goodness & mercy is with us always!
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord: That’s Security!
1. Only children (of God) dwell in the house (of God), Gal. 4:5-7.
2. Hold fast to the end, Heb. 3:6.
Forever: That’s Eternity!
-God’s sheep enter the eternal kingdom, Matt. 25:32-40, 46.
1. Ezek. 34:23-31: Christ, the Good Shepherd, has broken the bonds of sin & feeds His sheep in the pastures of spiritual safety & the peace of heavenly blessings.
2. The Lord is your shepherd when you listen & follow His word.