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Why if you possess the LORD, who possesses all things, then you lack nothing. Kyle Yates expressed it eloquently: "Because He loves me as the good Shepherd, I shall never want for rest, refreshment, sustenance, forgiveness, restoration, fellowship, guidance, deliverance from fear, comfort in sorrow, victory over enemies, security in troublous hours, joy in the Lord, power for service, or a home at the end of the earthly journey" Preaching from the Psalms, pp.

The Good Shepherd Jesus Christ has all the shepherd qualities and characteristics described in Psalm He is the great I AM. Jesus of Nazareth is the absolute timeless, eternal, independent, self—sustained, pre—existent One. He is the great I AM John One seasoned, veteran missionary in Africa once said, "God always heard the scraping of the bottom of the barrel," and He always provided the necessities of life. That was also true in the Apostle Paul's personal life. He wrote to a faithful church in Philippi the words of encouragement, "My God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus" Philippians The Apostle Paul reminded the young pastor Timothy to, "Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy" 1 Timothy It does us good to remind ourselves often who it is that provides us with our job opportunities and earthly goods lest we become arrogant.

With the resurrected Christ empowering his daily life Paul knew he could depend on Him. Have you found Him to be true in your daily life? Can you shout with Paul's great doxology these words in Ephesians —21? The Shepherd can be depended upon to provide nourishment and rest. The imagery is of sheep moving around grazing during the morning hours.

Beside Still Waters

They have found enough grass to make them full, and now they are tired and need to rest. The shepherd causes them to lie down in the grassy meadows with a sufficient water supply. When rest becomes imperative for us He supplies it.


The parallel line reinforces the same thought. He finds a safe place for the sheep to rest beside the still waters. What is pictured by the psalmist is nourishment, safety and a peaceful resting place for the sheep. Do you find yourself needing the "bread of life"? Have you come hungering and thirsting for that which the world can never satisfy?

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Have you come like the woman at the well in Samaria to the "water of life"? Jesus said to the woman, "whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life" John The "water of life" makes Himself available to us with refreshing rivers that bubble up within us.

Again Jesus said, "I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me shall not hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst" John On the last day of the Feast of the Tabernacles "Jesus stood and cried out, saying, 'If any man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, "From his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water. He is our spiritual food. It is the responsibility of the sheep to appropriate the spiritual food daily.

Not only does He lead me to spiritual nourishment and needed rest, but He forgives me and restores my soul.

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Because the Lord is my Shepherd I shall not lack forgiveness and restoration. The shepherd as a guide now appears. The emphasis of the verse is on the righteousness of God. God always leads men into His righteousness. His reputation and character are at stake. It is "for His name's sake. Just as the Lord Jesus is a perfect example of the character of God, so we His followers are to become like our model.

The Psalmist uses an interesting word signifying "to bring back the soul that is as it were flown away, so that it comes to itself again, therefore to impart new life" Keil and Delitzsch, Psalms , p. We are like wayward sheep wandering about aimlessly. Isaiah describes us spiritually. Are you in the need of His restoration, reconciliation and revival?

Come to His fountain for cleansing. First John is the secret. For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only this, but we also exult in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation" Romans — The God of grace sets before us prodigals the fatted calf! He gives me back my life. Remember how Jesus restored Peter after He rose from the dead? The Apostle Peter was acutely aware of God's forgiveness and restoration.

He wrote, "Seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence" 2 Peter We have a gracious Shepherd who provides forgiveness, peace and reconciliation to God. Do you hunger for righteousness? Jesus said in Matthew , "But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness. He revives, reinvigorates, and brings the soul back to itself. Jesus uses the same analogy in Luke The Good Shepherd goes in search of the one lost sheep.

He puts the ninety—nine sheep in a safe open pasture and continues to go out and look until he has found the one which is lost. This is exactly what the Good Shepherd did for us unrighteous sheep! Jesus said, "I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep. And I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they shall hear My voice; and they shall become one flock with one shepherd.

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No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This commandment I received from My Father" John , 14— The Good Shepherd has in intimate, love relationship with His sheep John — His relationship with His sheep is compared to the relationship with His Father.

The "knowledge" is one of intimacy. It is personal first hand experiential knowledge. In verse 15 the Father and Son have an intimate personal knowledge. It is a close relationship. Verse 14 tells us the Good Shepherd has the same kind of relationship with us! It is a mutual relationship "I know My own, and My own know Me. The Apostle Paul applies this great truth to us when he says, "He God made Him Jesus who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him" 2 Corinthians We have a loving, caring Shepherd who guarantees a right relationship with God.

Not only is the Shepherd the one who leads and guides, but He is also the Shepherd who is our host. The abiding presence of the Shepherd is the emphasis in verse four. When we fail and feel beaten down and done in our Good Shepherd comes to our side to demonstrate His changeless love and faithfulness. When we feel like all the music has gone out of our lives He gives us songs in the night. When we lay shattered in the dust He holds us in the palm of His hand. Nothing in life, death, pain, disappointment can separate us from our Shepherd.

For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord" Romans Before ascending into heaven Jesus reassured His disciples, "Surely, I am with you always, even to the end of the age" Matthew I shall never lack a constant companion in this life.

The "valley of the shadow of death" is literally "valley of deep darkness. It represents the deepest valleys you go through in life. The psalmist is picturing those experiences in life when sorrow and disease, disappointment and distress, pain and anguish of the soul make the heart break under its heavy load. He abides with us to comfort us in the valley of depression, serious illness, rejection, disloyalty, death of a spouse or loved one, even the experience of death itself. Jesus reminds us there is no dark valley at death for the believer. Jesus conquered death. Only the one who is the Resurrection and the Life can take us by the hand and lead us into eternal life.

Every individual who has put his faith in Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior will "dwell in the house of the Lord for ever. Do you believe this? The Apostle Paul was awaiting word from Nero as to whether he would be set free or be put to death. He expressed his faith in the resurrection of Christ when he wrote from his prison cell in Rome, "For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain" Philippians The Good Shepherd is my constant companion in life and death. What are we to do when the heart is breaking and the deep dark shadows of life gather about us, when the sun refuses to shine on us and our tears flow without end?

Like the psalmist, we are to remind ourselves, "Thou art with me! Our Shepherd walks through the valley hand in hand with us. He drives away the enemy with His rod, and He guides us with His staff. Talk about security! The Apostle Paul acknowledges this and brought to mind numerous experiences and the Lord's abiding presence in Romans ff. The Lord who is all knowing can give us guidance. The enemies of the Psalmist look on helplessly while he is the honored guest at a magnificent banquet given by a gracious host.

His enemies can only look on quietly as the host anoints him with sweet perfume. In David's day, the banquet table was a large piece of leather on which food was set. His enemies were seated at the same banquet helpless as his host anoints him. The shepherd carried a flask of oil to anoint the scratched face of the sheep. Our gracious Shepherd comes to us in our dire need and anoints us with His healing touch as the Great Physician. He comes with healing in His wings.

We have been invited to sit down at the marriage supper of the Lamb when Christ returns for His bride Revelation What a banquet that will be! His name will be vindicated and He will be glorified. My cup overflows. Our kind Shepherd spreads a table of abundance before us every day. God provides even to the excess. Reference Only.

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En dash not Hyphen. Let's Connect x. Subscribe to our Newsletter. Daily Devotionals x. Daily Bible Reading Plans x. Recently Popular Pages x. Recently Popular Media x. Matthew Henry :: Commentary on Psalms Psalm 23 Many of David's psalms are full of complaints, but this is full of comforts, and the expressions of delight in God's great goodness and dependence upon him. The psalmist here claims relation to God, as his shepherd v. He recounts his experience of the kind things God had done for him as his shepherd v. Hence he infers that he should want no good v.

A psalm of David. Psa From three very comfortable premises David, in this psalm, draws three very comfortable conclusions, and teaches us to do so too. From God's being his shepherd he infers that he shall not want anything that is good for him, v. See here, 1. The great care that God takes of believers. He is their shepherd, and they may call him so. Time was when David was himself a shepherd; he was taken from following the ewes great with young Ps. He remembered what need they had of a shepherd, and what a kindness it was to them to have one that was skilful and faithful; he once ventured his life to rescue a lamb.

By this therefore he illustrates God's care of his people; and to this our Saviour seems to refer when he says, I am the shepherd of the sheep; the good shepherd, Jn.

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He that is the shepherd of Israel, of the whole church in general Ps. He takes them into his fold, and then takes care of them, protects them, and provides for them, with more care and constancy than a shepherd can, that makes it his business to keep the flock. If God be as a shepherd to us, we must be as sheep, inoffensive, meek, and quiet, silent before the shearers, nay, and before the butcher too, useful and sociable; we must know the shepherd's voice, and follow him.

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The great confidence which believers have in God: "If the Lord is my shepherd, my feeder, I may conclude I shall not want any thing that is really necessary and good for me. Once he sent his men a begging for him to Nabal, and another time went himself a begging to Ahimelech; and yet, when he considers that God is his shepherd, he can boldly say, I shall not want.

Let not those fear starving that are at God's finding and have him for their feeder. More is implied than is expressed, not only, I shall not want, but, "I shall be supplied with whatever I need; and, if I have not every thing I desire, I may conclude it is either not fit for me or not good for me or I shall have it in due time.

From his performing the office of a good shepherd to him he infers that he needs not fear any evil in the greatest dangers and difficulties he could be in, v. He experiences the benefit of God's presence with him and care of him now, and therefore expects the benefit of them when he most needs it. The comforts of a living saint. God is his shepherd and his God-a God all-sufficient to all intents and purposes. David found him so, and so have we.

See the happiness of the saints as the sheep of God's pasture. They are well placed, well laid: He maketh me to lie down in green pastures. We have the supports and comforts of this life from God's good hand, our daily bread from him as our Father. The greatest abundance is but a dry pasture to a wicked man, who relishes that only in it which pleases the senses; but to a godly man, who tastes the goodness of God in all his enjoyments, and by faith relishes that, though he has but little of the world, it is a green pasture, Ps.

God's ordinances are the green pastures in which food is provided for all believers; the word of life is the nourishment of the new man. It is milk for babes, pasture for sheep, never barren, never eaten bare, never parched, but always a green pasture for faith to feed in. God makes his saints to lie down; he gives them quiet and contentment in their own minds, what ever their lot is; their souls dwell at ease in him, and that makes every pasture green. Are we blessed with the green pastures of the ordinances? Let us not think it enough to pass through them, but let us lie down in them, abide in them; this is my rest for ever.

It is by a constancy of the means of grace that the soul is fed. They are well guided, well led. The shepherd of Israel guides Joseph like a flock; and every believer is under the same guidance: He leadeth me beside the still waters. Those that feed on God's goodness must follow his direction; he leads them by his providence, by his word, by his Spirit, disposes of their affairs for the best, according to his counsel, disposes their affections and actions according to his command, directs their eye, their way, and their heart, into his love. The still waters by which he leads them yield them, not only a pleasant prospect, but many a cooling draught, many a reviving cordial, when they are thirsty and weary.

God provides for his people not only food and rest, but refreshment also and pleasure. The consolations of God, the joys of the Holy Ghost, are these still waters, by which the saints are led, streams which flow from the fountain of living waters and make glad the city of our God. God leads his people, not to the standing waters which corrupt and gather filth, not to the troubled sea, nor to the rapid rolling floods, but to the silent purling waters; for the still but running waters agree best with those spirits that flow out towards God and yet do it silently.

The divine guidance they are under is stripped of its metaphor v. Theses are the paths in which all the saints desire to be led and kept, and never to turn aside out of them. And those only are led by the still waters of comfort that walk in the paths of righteousness. The way of duty is the truly pleasant way. It is the work of righteousness that is peace. In these paths we cannot walk unless God both lead us into them and lead us in them. They are well helped when any thing ails them: He restoreth my soul.

The best saints are sensible of their proneness to go astray like lost sheep Ps. When, after one sin, David's heart smote him, and, after another, Nathan was sent to tell him, Thou art the man, God restored his soul. Though God may suffer his people to fall into sin, he will not suffer them to lie still in it. Many a time we should have fainted unless we had believed; and it was the good shepherd that kept us from fainting. See here the courage of a dying saint v.

That name therefore shall still be my strong tower, and shall assure me that he who has led me, and fed me, all my life long, will not leave me at last. Imminent danger supposed: "Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, that is, though I am in peril of death, though in the midst of dangers, deep as a valley, dark as a shadow, and dreadful as death itself,' or rather, "though I am under the arrests of death, have received the sentence of death within myself, and have all the reason in the world to look upon myself as a dying man, yet I am easy. Here is one word indeed which sounds terrible; it is death, which we must all count upon; there is no discharge in that war.

But, even in the supposition of the distress, there are four words which lessen the terror:-It is death indeed that is before us; but, [1. The wicked are chased out of the world, and their souls are required; but the saints take a walk to another world as cheerfully as they take their leave of this. This danger made light of, and triumphed over, upon good grounds. Death is a king of terrors, but not to the sheep of Christ; they tremble at it no more than sheep do that are appointed for the slaughter. None of these things move me. The sucking child may play upon the hole of this asp; and the weaned child, that, through grace, is weaned from this world, may put his hand upon this cockatrice's den, bidding a holy defiance to death, as Paul, O death!