The Lord is my Shepherd

Psalms 23: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.

 If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.  I’m thankful that being a Christian is more than a religion, more than a principle, more than a certain lifestyle.  We follow more than mere teachings of men; we follow God Almighty and his Son Jesus Christ.

David wrote this psalm from his heart.  He drew a picture of a shepherd.  That’s what he was.  David did his best to care for the sheep.  It was his job, but he also loved them.   The sheep were his responsibility and his heart.  He thought how perfect a shepherd the Lord was.  No one is perfect at the work they do, but our Savior is perfect at the work he does.

I shall not want.  David reminds us that because we trust Jesus as our shepherd our past needs have been met.  Our present needs are met.  I know that the Lord will make a way for whatever need comes tomorrow.  In verse 4 David looked forward.  He knew he’d die and that when he did he’d be in the house of the Lord forever.  He’d not be in a tomb but in the presence of God.  The time between now and then might frighten us.  To be a good soldier we must first fear the enemy.  That means to respect the enemy enough to keep up our guard.  The fear causes us to be a good soldier.  We live in a time of great fear, but it’s also a time of a great lack of fear.  People don’t fear death and the coming of the Lord.  If there was ever a time to fear the end, it is now.  Even being an American our safety is not guaranteed.  We may feel safe from terrorists, but we’re not.  There are cells of ISIS in most states.  Most of what we hear about is in Europe and the Middle East but it’s here too.  That’s the aspect of terrorism.  There are many terrorist groups out there besides ISIS.

We live on shaky ground.  There is almost an abolition of right and a legalization of everything wrong.  Evil is pushing its way like a bulldozer to the point of equating Christians with terrorism.  Changes in our health and our health care have taken a big shift.  Times are scary.  We can’t trust in man and society.  We have been let down.  Evil is malicious.  If our body goes out of whack in any way it can harm us.  David said because the Lord is my shepherd I will fear no evil.  He didn’t say there would be no evil or that we’d never suffer from evil.  We just don’t need to fear.  When the bad comes, Jesus will still be our shepherd.

The comfort is not in us.  It is in God.  He’s our shepherd and whatever evil, whatever valley comes we don’t have to fear because He is with us.  David didn’t ignore it.  He stuck with Jesus.  Abiding in Jesus means to trust in him.  We may have to let go of many things but we don’t have to let go of God.  God brought David from the shepherd fold to the battle with Goliath to the throne of Israel.  He was with David.  That’s what mattered.  It was not David’s rod.  It wasn’t just any staff that beat off evil.  We don’t have it.  We can’t handle much.  David didn’t say my rod and my staff.  It was God’s rod.  It was God’s staff.  They would direct him.  They would clear the way.  Whatever comes in the way can be handled by God.  His rod is in his hand, and he’ll cleanse the threshing floor.  He went through the valley so he could be with us.  The rod and staff bring us comfort.  Evil is not afraid of us, but it is afraid of the Lord.  Evil has to flee in the presence of God.

We don’t have to fear the valley of the shadow of death.  We might be scared but we won’t be afraid.  In times of weakness the Lord has been my strength.  If the rapture doesn’t take me, I’ll go through that valley but I’ll not be alone.  At the end of it is a table.  The old body might go to the ground but old Bob will go to the table of God.

The Lord is my shepherd.  I will fear no evil.  Don’t be afraid.  Trust counters fear.  When we can’t hold on, hang onto the Lord.  Whatever comes tomorrow we don’t have to fear.  When it’s all said and done we’ll dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

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