“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. 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. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever” (Psalm 23)
Jehovah Rohi shepherds the sheep that never wants anything outside Christ and His provision, totally satisfied; utterly content; there is no desire to change position, just to mature in this place of fulfillment. Believers are called sheep. Believers are never called dogs, horses or swine. Sheep are timid, foolish, slow, defenseless, totally lack the home instinct (if they are lost they can never find their way home). They depend totally on their Shepherd for their very life.
The promises of Psalm 23!
• I shall not want: Contentment: highest spiritual achievement
• He makes me lie down: Sheep cannot lie down if they are afraid of enemies, hungry or sick. The shepherd provides protection, food, and medicine so that they can rest.
• He leads me beside the still waters: The Shepherd locates clean springs of the water of life (dirty religious water makes them sick).
• He restores my soul: If sheep fall upside down they can’t get back on their feet again on their own. They will stay like that until they die of thirst or wild animals kill them. The Shepherd counts them, if anyone is missing it may be that it fell and needs rescuing.
• He leads me in the paths: Sheep need to be on the move. If they stay too long in the same area they will over graze and destroy the roots of the grass leaving the area barren. The Shepherd gently pushes me to ‘walk in the Spirit.’
• Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death: Through the valley the flocks go gently to the top of the mountain in the summer time. Through trials I grow and mature to a higher level of faith
• Your rod and your staff they comfort me: The rod is a weapon, like a police baton or a gun to attack the wild animals. The staff is for the Shepherd to lean on and to use it to bring life the tired lambs. Together they represent the Word and the Spirit.
In Christ I declare:
Jehovah is my Shepherd. Jesus is my good shepherd (Jn 10:11). The Shepherd is the Manager of my daily life. In Jesus’ name, Amen!
(In the picture, see how the sheep follow their shepherd)