Our Great Shepherd
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. ~Psalm 23:1
Perhaps no psalm is more loved by believers than Psalm 23. It is the second of a trilogy of psalms that are known as the shepherd psalms. In Psalm 22, Jesus is seen as our Good Shepherd. In Psalm 24, Jesus is seen as the Chief Shepherd. In Psalm 22, we see Jesus as the Great Shepherd. This comes from Hebrews 13:20 where it speaks of our Lord Jesus as the Great Shepherd of the sheep. This morning, let us be refreshed by the person of our Great Shepherd.
We see a satisfying relationship.
“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.” Jesus is the Great Shepherd to anyone who places his faith and trust in Him as his Savior. It is a personal relationship. It is a relationship with a new beginning. It is a relationship with an eternal home. When Jesus is our Shepherd, everything we need for our life is found in Him. We are complete in Him. Nobody loves and cares for us more than Jesus does. He is a Shepherd Who does not fail us. He is a Shepherd Who never leaves us or forsakes us. He is all I need!
We see his supervisory role.
“He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” As our Shepherd, He cares for and nourishes our soul. He looks out for our best interest. He is our spiritual leader Who takes us into pastures where we can abundantly feed and drink for our souls. His seeks to replenish the strength and power that often is depleted in our lives. He directs our path where it is safe and will give Him glory. We must look to our Shepherd for our leadership, guidance, and strengthening.
We see his sheltering refuge.
“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” The valley of the shadow of death is an ominous term that refers to danger and death lurking nearby. It is a term that travelers used to speak of their journey through valleys overshadowed by tall mountain passes. However, instead of fear, He gives us courage. Instead of abandonment, He is our constant companion. Instead of doubt, He is the object of our faith. He is ever at our side and defends us. He comforts us even as the shadow is lurking. In His name we have a strong tower we can run to and find safety.
We see his special reservations.
“Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.” Notice, we have a special place at His table where we can dine with Him. Like Mephibosheth who was invited to eat all the days of his life with David, Jesus has a place for us at His table. Then, He readily refreshes us with oil. Oil is symbolic of the Holy Spirit. Oil poured on the head was an a