Psalm 23:1 – The Lord is my Shepherd
David writes Psalm 23 under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. David is the youngest boy in his family. When God tells Samuel of Saul’s demise, the Lord reveals to Samuel the new king will come from one of the sons of Jesse. Samuel goes to Jesse and relays the news. The sons of Jesse, starting with the oldest, are paraded in front of Samuel. Seven times Samuel dismisses Jesse’s son because they are not the future King. God says to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature because I have rejected him: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7) When the last son comes before Samuel and is passed over, Samuel asks if there are any other sons. With a tinge of disbelief, Jesse reports there is one more, but he is tending the sheep. Surely it is not my youngest son who is only a shepherd – a job passed down through the sons and ended with the youngest. To the astonishment of his family, David the shepherd will be the new King of Israel.
Between Two Realities
With this revelation, David sets out on a course he never expects for his life. For a time, he lives in between two realities. He retains his job as a shepherd but also knows he will one day become King. However, Psalm 23 reminds us that David remembers his rightful place before the true King – God. David knows his job is only to be faithful and obedient where he is at the time. As David lives between two realities, he is faithful to the tasks put before him.
A Shepherd and His Sheep
We are not sure on the exact date when Psalm 23 is written. Some believe it is when Saul pursues David. Others think Psalm 23 is written in the latter part of David’s life. Regardless, David reminds us of our place before God. He is our shepherd. In all the experience David has in shepherding, he realizes the characteristics of a good shepherd and sheep. David remembers we are all sheep in need of a shepherd to guide every step we take. Without the Good Shepherd, we are nothing. We are the walking dead.
How Will You Respond?
What action do you need to take as you live between two realities? We are here in this world, but we have the knowledge that we are also heirs with Christ. Your only job is to be faithful where God has placed you. He will move you. He will guide you. He will nourish you. He is your Good Shepherd.