The Possession And Provision Of The Shepherd
Feb. 20, 2011
INTRODUCTION: "Psalm 23 has filled the air of the world with joy greater than the heart can conceive. It has charmed more grief to rest than all of the philosophers of the world. It has comforted the hearts of the poor. It has sung courage to the army of the disappointed."
Henry Ward Beecher
Ps 23 has been referred to as "everybody's psalm." The little child learns it at his mother's knee, the youth seeks its wisdom in hours of temptation and uncertainty, and the aged quote it with quivering lips as the Angel of Death approaches.
David wrote this Psalm, but we cannot be sure when; it dates back 30 centuries. Some think he wrote it as an old man, approaching the end of life's journey, looking back over his life and rejoicing in the goodness of God. Others think he wrote it as a youth, out there on the Judean hills, his father's flock around him, his harp in his hand, and his soul aflame with the great thought which had just come to him.
It has been said that you cannot personalize Ps 23 until you possess the truth of Ps 22. In Ps 22, we see the Good Shepherd crucified on the cross.
John 10:11, "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep."
He is our Great Shepherd in that He arose from the dead and cares for His sheep.
Hebrews 13:20, "Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant"
He is our Chief Shepherd in that He is coming again.
1 Peter 5:4, "and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away."
This Psalm is filled with lasting truths, just waiting to be grasped. This Psalm is quite personal. Even though a flock is implied, it is not in view here, only the Lord and the Psalmist.
Seventeen times the writer refers to himself and thirteen times to the Lord. While ...
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