1 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
3 He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name's sake.
4 Even 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.
5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
Arguably the most loved and recognizable of all the psalms, Psalm 23 is a description of God through the eyes of David. The psalmist uses two familiar images. The shepherd and the great feast to create this beautiful image of God.
As a shepherd cares for his sheep, so to does God care for his people. He provides us with all we need, he calls us to rest in him, to trust that he will lead us in the ways that we should go. Even though our path is fraught with danger and the evil of the world, he admonishes us to fear no evil. Why? Because God is with us. We can be confident that God is in charge. We are safe in him.
The great feast tells again of God's provision for us. He will feed us, both physically and spiritually. The oil and cup assures us of the joy and gladness of the Lord is ours. The last verse reminds us that our salvation is guaranteed through the grace of our Shepherd, our God. Can we be anything but awestruck and filled with gratitude as we read this beautiful psalm? Thank you Jesus!