The Satisfaction of our Shepherd's Sheep

Bible Book: Psalms  23 : 6
Subject: Satisfaction
INTRODUCTION

It is as though the sheep is on the King’s Highway. As he/she recounts the Shepherd’s dealings throughout their life, they swell with joy at His faithfulness at times.

Ps 103:1-5 fits well with Ps 23 as the Psalmist recounts the sheep’s benefits in knowing the Shepherd.

Psalms 103:1-5

“Bless the Lord, O my soul;

And all that is within me, bless His holy name!

Bless the Lord, O my soul,

And forget not all His benefits:

Who forgives all your iniquities,

Who heals all your diseases,

Who redeems your life from destruction,

Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies,

Who satisfies your mouth with good things,

So that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.”

If one were to desire to sing as an expression of gratitude for the Shepherd’s care, I suggest, “Count Your Blessings.”

He is a sheep so utterly satisfied with his lot in life, fully contented with the care he receives. So much “at home” with the shepherd that there is not a shred of desire for a change. On the shepherd’s side, there has developed a great affection and devotion to his flock. Psalmist, writing from the standpoint of a sheep, is reflecting on and recounting the full round of the year’s activities. He has taken us from green pastures and still waters, up through the mountain passes to the high tablelands of the summer. Fall, with its storms, rain, and sleet drives the sheep down to the foothills and towards home. The shepherd’s alertness, care, and management have brought the sheep through satisfactorily.

The word for “house” is the family or household, or flock of the Good Shepherd. The sheep is so deeply satisfied with the flock to which it belongs; also satisfied with their shepherd.

♦ We should be proud to belong to Christ

♦ We should feel free to boast to others of how good He is

♦ We should look back and recall all the amazing ways He

provided for our welfare

♦ We should be proud of the flock we are a part of

I. SHEEP BEING PURSUED BY THE SHEPHERD. 6a

“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life”

“surely” – means only, nothing but; speaks of assurance that the shepherd’s care will be unremitting day by day.

“This is a fact as indisputable as it is encouraging, and therefore a heavenly verily or ‘surely’ is set as a seal upon it. ‘Only goodness and mercy’ for there shall be unmingled mercy in our history.’” Charles Spurgeon

We don’t understand why some things happen. But one day we’ll realize that everything is under God’s goodness and mercy. In spite of David’s sin and failures, he had been followed by goodness and mercy.

“goodness and mercy” – Harry Ironside used to say that goodness and mercy are the sheepdogs that help keep the sheep where they belong.

Twin guardian angels will always be with me at my back and my beck. Just as when great princes go abroad they must not go unattended, so it is with the believer.

“Or, ‘God’s footmen.’ When a wealthy man traveled, two footmen took their places behind him on his couch. Their task was to smooth the way for him. Where he went, they went, always there. When the coach stopped, they jumped down to open the door for him. They would hurry into the inn to make sure his room was ready and his supper served. God’s two footmen are goodness and mercy and they follow us just like those footmen to smooth our journey home.” Charles Spurgeon

“goodness” – is the fulfillment and perfection of God’s will.

“mercy” – is His covenant-love, redemptive power, and faithfulness. The goodness of God and love of God will “follow” or “pursue” David throughout his lifetime. Sometimes, as in David’s relationship with Bathsheba, it is a severe mercy, but mercy at its best, seeking God’s goodness in our lives.

♦ Goodness supplies our needs

♦ Mercy blots out our sins Charles Spurgeon


♦ Goodness takes care of my steps

♦ Mercy takes care of my stumbles John Phillips

The Psalmist expresses deep confidence in God’s loyalty

II. SHEEP BEING PROMISED BY THE SHEPHERD.

6b

“And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever”

This text reminds us that God’s covenant allows no ending to His commitment.

In John 17:24, Jesus on His way to the cross, prays; herethe prayer is answered.

“Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world.”

Ps 23:6 speaks of David’s resolute persuasion.

He came to this place by experience of God’s favor. He fed him in green pastures, and led him by refreshing waters, He restores him and leads him on the paths of righteousness. He strengthens him in great dangers, even of death, and preserves him, he enriches him with many benefits. By means of all these mercies of God bestowed on him, he came to be persuaded of the continued favor of God towards him.

John 14:1-6 will be a reality. Under the old covenant, the sheep died for the shepherd, but under the new covenant the Shepherd died for the sheep, and we shall meet our Shepherd in heaven.