Psalms 23 The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
3 he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
for his name’s sake.
4 Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord
There are two aspects to this particular Psalm. The first aspect is to see David talking about the wonder of his God. The second aspect is to realise that it follows some 22 which dealt with the death of Christ, so this one talks about Christ’s resurrection.
Firstly it talks about God as being the shepherd. It gives us a picture of the humbleness of God the Father because it allows him to be compared with the shepherd. We should be filled with admiration that the God who created the earth can be considered a shepherd and know the sheep and its needs and to be able to provide the comfort of green pastures and still water.
More importantly he restores the soul. This is where the psalm has two aspects. Jesus is dead on the cross, what does he need? His soul restored. And the very next verse it talks about going through the valley of the shadow of death. Jesus following his death, needed his life. Going through the shallow of death is the pathway he had to take and because he is taken it we can now follow. Jesus could follow the pathway and fear no evil, because God was leading him through and his staff which represented the role of God, that of being a shepherd, and the rod which is a weapon of attack and defence. So in death we fear no evil. And the walked through the valley of the shadow of death was successful.
David was anointed king, and Jesus is anointed king of kings. And table is set before him in the presence of his enemies. We need to that as believers understand we will be involved in the mighty feast of the Lamb dressed in the white clothes that he provides. But here it talks about a feast where the enemies of Christ will see Jesus having a feast presented by God. The enemies of God or unbelievers will reach heaven and be looking on as if in a grandstand and see Jesus and the feast that they will be merely onlookers on a path to a different destination.
The next passage talks about the expectation of David, and the many who follow him about the surety of being able to dwell in the house of the Lord forever and have the blessings that go with that the goodness and the knowledge of mercy and the surety of eternal life.
In this psalm we see the incredible difference between the turmoil of the death of Christ, to the wonder of life with Christ and the future in eternity.
Dear Father, when I consider the wonder of the universe and think that the creator of the of it all died on the cross and walk-through the valley of the shadow of death so that I can follow on, I am amazed. May I always respect your name and understand your holiness as well is appreciating the wonder of grace. I also need to realise that it’s not on my works and the good things that I might do or achieve, but by the wonder of your grace and mercy that enable me to stand tall and realise that you are always with me. May your spirit lead me as I take time to pray for other people. Lead me and teach me exactly what I need to do and how I need to pray when I consider someone who is sick, or suffering. May I see what you are doing in their lives so that I can act in a way that they might be able to teach them to see the wonder of your grace and that you there in every situation. Amen