Main point summary
Because Yahweh is my shepherd, I lack nothing and will gain everything.
The LORD is my shepherd; therefore, I lack nothing. What an amazing comfort! The LORD is my shepherd, I will not lack anything I need. Let me stop right here and ask what have you felt recently that you’ve been lacking? M oney? Do you feel the tension of a tight budget or of the strain this virus might put on your finances. The LORD is your shepherd; therefore, you lack nothing. Health? Are you battling through physical pain or the aging process (with all of its ups and downs) or through a disease with regular appointments and surgeries? Maybe this has caused you to wonder if God is even around. The LORD is your shepherd; therefore, you lack nothing. Friends? Do you feel lonely not being able to get out of your house right now? Isolated? Depressed? Desperately in need of encouragement? The LORD is your shepherd; therefore, you lack nothing. And HOW does the LORD come to you and lead you as shepherd? V.2 says he will lead you in good paths in order to refresh your soul. Will you let him do that? Will you pursue him in His Word and taste and see that he is good? Now, when we have more time than ever, is an especially good time for us to let him lead us in this way. He desires to refresh your soul in His good paths. V.3 says He will guide you along the right paths. Everyone else may not guide you along the right paths. But He will. What paths are you following right now? Who is leading you? Who is leading you in how to think about and respond to what our world is going through? Are you being led and shaped in how to think about COVID-19 by the 10 o'clock news? Are you choosing to meditate on what you've heard on talk news or everything you’ve read on social media? One could easily be swayed and tossed around by the most recent point of view coming from any number of media outlets. The LORD will guide you on the right paths for his name's sake. He wants to glorify his own name through you during this time. V.4 says that sometimes those right paths will include dark valleys. I don't think it is any coincidence that v.4 follows v.3. Dark valleys are times of questioning. They're times of wondering. Does God really know what he's doing? Is he even around? And it's in these times that we need to know God's character more than ever. In the dark valleys, "I will fear no evil" for you are with me. Notice that he doesn't say "for the LORD is with me" but transitions to a more personal way of referencing God and says "for YOU are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me." God uses every means at his disposal to keep us on the right path in the midst of the darkest valleys. What an amazing comfort. In Paul Tripp’s book Suffering , he says this: “We all live in moments, locations, situations, or relationships that seem to be spinning out of control, but they are not out of control. Yes, they are way beyond the scope of our control, but they are under the rule of the One who is not only in complete control but is also perfectly good in every way. By the grace of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus, God is your Father. He exercises his sovereignty with a father’s love for you. He hears your cries for help, and he stays near, and he is always reachable. He has authority you will never have, and he exercises it with a wise and loving heart for your benefit and the benefit of each of his children.” God is in complete control, working out all things for our good and for the sake of His name. This means that I have nothing to fear in the life and everything to look forward to in the life to come. What else can we conclude other than, "Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever"?
The Lord is my d shepherd;
The Lord is my shepherd,
I shall not e want.
I lack nothing.
He makes me lie down in green f pastures.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
He leads me beside still waters. 1
he leads me beside quiet waters,
He g restores my soul.
he refreshes my soul.
He h leads me in i paths of righteousness 1
He guides me along the right paths
for his j name’s sake.
for his name’s sake.
Even though I k walk through the valley of l the shadow of death, 1
Even though I walk through the darkest valley,
I will m fear no evil,
I will fear no evil,
for n you are with me;
for you are with me;
your o rod and your staff, they comfort me.
your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
You p prepare a table before me in q the presence of my enemies;
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.
you r anoint my head with oil;
You anoint my head with oil;
my s cup overflows.
my cup overflows.
Surely 1 goodness and mercy 2 shall follow me all the days of my life,
Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life,
and I shall t dwell 3 in the house of the Lord u forever. 4
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
Change from 3rd person to 2nd person. More personal.
"for his name's sake" seems like a distinct purpose. So, this series includes two things that God does with two distinct purposes.
One interesting progression here is from the third person to second person pronouns.