The Valley Of The Shadow

Our God is in the protection business!

Psalm 23
“The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake.
Yea, 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.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the LORD Forever.”

This beautiful song, or psalm, about our Lord Jesus is one of my all-time favorites.  No doubt many of you can say the same.  It never ceases to amaze me how Jesus loves and cares for us so tenderly, seeing to our every need.  Isn’t He awesome? ♥️

A Change Of Focus.

David is the Psalmist who wrote this.  In his journey he is going along just fine, talking about how “the LORD” is his Shepherd, totally focused on Jesus.  Then notice the shift in his attention from “The LORD (who) is my Shepherd,” to “Yea, though I walk?”  He changes from focusing ON JESUS… being focused ON “himself.” 🤔 

The Shadow Of Death.

Thank God, however, it is only the valley of the “SHADOW” of death and not death itself.  After all, the shadow of a snake never killed anyone.  What is the Holy Spirit trying to tell us?  That this is a non-fatal trial, most likely of our own making.

But whether I am “resting in and totally relying on Jesus’ care and provision for me OR taking matters into my own, incapable hands, He will NEVER, EVER leave or forsake me.  The good news is I need not fear any evil for He is with me every step of the way, even if the “valley of the shadow,” is of my own doing.

For more on that topic, you may follow the link below:

Psalm 91 Series Part 1 of 7: The Secret Place.

Does God Punish Us?

“Your rod and Your staff they comfort me.”

This verse used to confuse me. Many well-meaning preachers have mistakenly taught that God uses the “Rod” to punish.  But that’s not our Dad!  He doesn’t punish us.  How could He when His beloved Son took all our punishment on Himself in our place?  We stand in His righteousness.

Our Dad gently, lovingly guides, directs, and lovingly disciplines us as we would a child for our benefit, but He never punishes.  It would be unfair to Jesus Who already bore ALL our punishment on the cross.

Not The Author Of Disease Or Accidents.

The Good Shepherd, Who gave His life for the sheep, is not the Author of sickness, disease or accidents.  He doesn’t give us these things to teach us a lesson as some may have hinted from the pulpit.

(For a more in-depth discussion on that topic, you may follow the link below):

Enemies Of The Sheep Beware!

In the case of the enemies of the sheep, however, it’s a whole different story. They’re the ones that need to fear!  They’re the ones the shepherd attacked with His rod and staff when they attempted to harm His flock.

That’s why the rod and staff are a comfort!

Oh, yes: our Jesus is always with us: Loving, guiding, providing, and protecting, even in the Valley of the Shadow.

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