Psalm 23 can be summed up with the first half of verse one: “The Lord is my shepherd…” If you make the Lord your shepherd, you can expect the benefits of being under His care, His provision and protection. With the Lord as the shepherd of your life you lack nothing and have all you will ever need. God will supply all your needs according to the riches of His glory in Christ Jesus. God wants us to get to the place where we stop looking to worldly solutions to spiritual problems. Instead our default should be to look to Him. Bring what you have to the Lord. Stop looking at the wind and waves. Don’t doubt God, little flock. Keep your eyes on Jesus! In the same way that a good shepherd feeds their sheep and leads them besides still waters, God turns back or restores our soul from death. God pulls us from the icy waters and saves us and puts us on the path of righteousness. When we feel troubled, alone, or vulnerable, we should return home, to those places where God first revealed Himself as the good shepherd, where we learned of His faithfulness, provision and care.
To go deeper, read Psalm 23 then take some time to answer the questions below.
Why is the pronoun “my” so important in verse one of Psalm 23? What does it mean to have all that you need? How are needs different than wants? How does God take care of both our needs and wants? With the Lord as your shepherd, why can you say, “I shall not want?”
What is the meaning behind Jehovah-Rohi? What do you think about the eternal, all powerful God revealing Himself as a shepherd and friend? What are some characteristics of a good shepherd? What is central to the relationship between the shepherd and his sheep? Why should they know each other?
What is the significance of lying down in green pastures and being led still waters? How does Jesus show himself to be the good shepherd in John 6 and Matthew 14? How are these passages similar to Psalm 23?
What was the disciples first response to Jesus’ request to get the crowd something to eat? In what ways do we look to worldly solutions to spiritual problems? What is a better way to handle problems? What “loaves and fishes” do you have to offer to Jesus?
Have you ever felt like you were straining at the oars? Explain. What happens when we take our eyes off of Jesus and start looking at the storm? How can you relate to Peter? How does God restore our soul? What path does God put us on? Where does this path lead? How does this relate to Psalm 23:1-3? What did green pastures and still waters represent or mean to David?
Scriptures used in this teaching: Luke 12:32; Psalm 23:1-3, Psalm 25:14; John 10:14, 27-28; Philippians 4:19; Matthew 14:16-18; John 6:1-13; Psalm 5:8; Proverbs 12:28