The Lord is my Shepherd: Psalms 23:1
“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want” (Psalms 23:1). These lyrical verses of Psalm 23 have been echoing and reverberating across the halls and walls of churches, Bible studies, Evangelistic platforms and stages, pulpits, mics and megaphones of Christian conferences and meetings from the very day it was composed by David.
Billions of people have pronounced this magnificent word in their worship during the passage of time. This immemorial and the epic song goes on. But has anyone paused and revisited the words of David with the meaning with which he had sung these awesome worship lyrics?
What was the implication in David’s historical Psalm 23? He actually worship the Almighty by singing, “If you are my Lord, I am your sheep”. Now, what is a sheep? The dictionary defines ‘sheep’ as a gentle, mild, meek, timid & humble animal with no initiative at all.
Having said that, the poignant primer is that do all of us who frequently sing Psalm 23 have absolutely confessed and accepted that we are gentle, mild, meek & humble beings? How many of us are really meek & humble? Are we sheep enough to be worthy of Lord’s shepherding? How many of us have the humility to behave / accept publicly that we are meek, timid & humble? Today’s 21 millennium world is full of either intelligent or pseudo intelligent people in fact, more pseudos than genuine, outsmarting one another, boasting of materialistic achievements, mud-slinging & back-bashing, competitive rhetorics or the talks of the town.
Let us ponder pragmatically and draw a lesson from the papyrus pages of David – he was a ‘King’ when he composed the Psalm and please note how humbly & meekly he prostrates himself in front of the Almighty Lord, totally surrendering as a timid sheep in absolute humility. A king totally humbling himself for the glory of God, for the Lord’s namesake – so says Psalm 23:3. Once again, please note here the magnificent worship words of David “for his namesake”, i.e. all for the glory of God. That was why, despite his many follies, David was the man after God’s own heart!
Jesus said, “and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice” (John 10:3-4). Here we find the message and command coming to us directly from Jesus Himself. Jesus explicitly emphasizes that only His ‘sheep’ will hear & recognize His voice and would follow Him. Very specific without any gray matters or ambiguous linings in the words of Jesus. Simply abbreviated, Jesus says that His followers must inadvertently be “gentle, mild, meek, timid and humble” for Him to be their shepherd. This was also exactly what Jesus highlighted in The Beatitudes “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth” (Matthew 5:5).
Therefore, the need of the day is for us all to be absolutely gentle, mild, meek & humble to inherit not only this world but the Kingdom to come where Jesus rules as well. Amen!