The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name's sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the LORD Forever. – Psalm 23
Psalm 23 is probably the most well know passage in scripture. These 117 words in English have been a constant source of support and blessing and comfort and encouragement for a whole range of people, some of whom don’t even recognise the Shepherd as their Lord.
That’s fine. If the word of God can provide some comfort in a tough time that is a nice added benefit.
But for those of us who are His sheep these are more than just a few comforting words. They are mighty promises that we can hold on to in this troublesome old world.
Our Great Shepherd meets our needs. He gives us rest. He guides us. He restores us. He leads us in righteousness.
Even in evil days I don’t have to fear evil because God is with me. We find comfort in his shepherd’s hook and in his staff of protection.
We know from Jesus’ words that He is the Good Shepherd and that the Good Shepherd goes so far as to give His life for His sheep.
The beautiful bit of world literature is more than just a classic piece of writing. It is a precious reminder of our own Great and Good Shepherd. It is a reminder to us of what He does for us.
I hope we never get accustomed to its words.