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(A Psalm of David.) The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.

2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.

4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

Commentary for Psalms 23

Confidence in God's grace and care.

- "The Lord is my shepherd." In these words, the believer is taught to express his satisfaction in the care of the great Pastor of the universe, the Redeemer and Preserver of men. With joy he reflects that he has a shepherd, and that shepherd is Jehovah. A flock of sheep, gentle and harmless, feeding in verdant pastures, under the care of a skilful, watchful, and tender shepherd, forms an emblem of believers brought back to the Shepherd of their souls. The greatest abundance is but a dry pasture to a wicked man, who relishes in it only what pleases the senses; but to a godly man, who by faith tastes the goodness of God in all his enjoyments, though he has but little of the world, it is a green pasture. The Lord gives quiet and contentment in the mind, whatever the lot is. Are we blessed with the green pastures of the ordinances, let us not think it enough to pass through them, but let us abide in them. The consolations of the Holy Spirit are the still waters by which the saints are led; the streams which flow from the Fountain of living waters. Those only are led by the still waters of comfort, who walk in the paths of righteousness. The way of duty is the truly pleasant way. The work of righteousness in peace. In these paths we cannot walk, unless. God lead us into them, and lead us on in them. Discontent and distrust proceed from unbelief; an unsteady walk is the consequence: let us then simply trust our Shepherd's care, and hearken to his voice. The valley of the shadow of death may denote the most severe and terrible affliction, or dark dispensation of providence, that the psalmist ever could come under. Between the part of the flock on earth and that which is gone to heaven, death lies like a dark valley that must be passed in going from one to the other. But even in this there are words which lessen the terror. It is but the shadow of death: the shadow of a serpent will not sting, nor the shadow of a sword kill. It is a valley, deep indeed, and dark, and miry; but valleys are often fruitful, and so is death itself fruitful of comforts to God's people. It is a walk through it: they shall not be lost in this valley, but get safe to the mountain on the other side. Death is a king of terrors, but not to the sheep of Christ. When they come to die, God will rebuke the enemy; he will guide them with his rod, and sustain them with his staff. There is enough in the gospel to comfort the saints when dying, and underneath them are the everlasting arms. The Lord's people feast at his table, upon the provisions of his love. Satan and wicked men are not able to destroy their comforts, while they are anointed with the Holy Spirit, and drink of the cup of salvation which is ever full. Past experience teaches believers to trust that the goodness and mercy of God will follow them all the days of their lives, and it is their desire and determination, to seek their happiness in the service of God here, and they hope to enjoy his love for ever in heaven. While here, the Lord can make any situation pleasant, by the anointing of his Spirit and the joys of his salvation. But those that would be satisfied with the blessings of his house, must keep close to the duties of it.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for Psalms 23

  • Carla
    I agree with Kirk. I believe that thy rod
  • Bob Forrest
    Remember that the Lord is our shepherd. The shepherd uses his rod and his staff to protect us and guide us. When he is guiding us along and we stray, as sheep often do, he gently taps us with his staff to correct us and get us back on the right path. For sheep, it is comforting to know his shepherd is nearby.
  • Marvin
    Marquisha: For me, this verse says that the LORD (Jesus) leads me wherever I may go. But also that HE is leading me where HE wants me to go. In the phrase: "I shall not want", the word "want" means "lack". In essence, "I shall not lack". Meaning HE is ALWAYS with us and we may freely receive of HIM all we open our hearts to. In HIM we have a converted soul, peace, comfort and protection eternally.
  • Bruce
    There's Nothing magical about any Verse or The Bible Just Thinking such a Thing Places You on The Path of Satan. It's witchcraft /You are to Come Boldly Unto The Throne of Grace, That We may Obtain Mercy and Find Grace to Help in Time of Need (Hebrews 4:16) Ask Forgiveness (1John 1:9) Whosoever was Not Found Written in The Book of Life was Cast into The Lake of Fire( Revelation 20:15)
  • Albert Mensah
    This is a magic prayer. Read it three times before venturing anything. It makes one brave to confront all problems, even in poverty, when sick ,when despaired. Whatever we do we have enemies, our streets are valleys of death, even in our own home. Pray this verse to get motivated. ASK AND IT SHALL BE GIVEN
  • Marquisha Jerry
    So I need more feedback on this scripture. Like give me some more information that nobody else knew of on this chapter. Anyone?
  • Don
    The rod and staff to me are God's promises and covenants with the believers. They are very comforting to me.
  • Bill Howard
    I love this passage it is majestic...from our King ..
  • Kirk
    I always took "Thy Rod and thy Staff" as a reference to the powers he commands in his/our world to guard and protect his will and to keep us safe from harm.
  • Terry Gene Bottom
    Elizabeth miller thy rod and thy staff refer to the holy spirit

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Bible Trivia

David says the Lord anoints his what with oil?
  • Head
  • Hands
  • Heart
  • Bread

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