When John 3:16 was surpassed by “Judge not, lest ye be judged” as the most quoted verse in the Bible, it really did confirm a shift in religious thinking. But when it comes to our need for comfort and hope we still look to the words of an ancient song to settle our hearts and lift our spirits on our worst days. Who hasn’t heard these beautiful words: “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want”? These, the opening words of Psalm 23, brings assurance to God’s people. A promise that He watches over them to provide for their every need. “He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters.” He guarantees safety and rest for those tired from the troubles of this world. “He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” This takes us to the heart of our spiritual journey. Being guided on the Narrow Road for the purpose of bringing glory to our holy God. “Even 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.” We are never forsaken, never alone.
Even in our darkest hours. It is then we learn that God is always close and giving us courage to move on. “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows” The godly are ever at a spiritual banquet in the presence of the King of Kings. The enemies of the cross look on to see God’s anointed being blessed beyond measure. “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever.” When we strip away all the temporal trapping of this physical world, we appreciate the joy and value of ‘goodness and mercy.’ Being in the presence of God here, and in heaven to come, is the soul-sustaining hope of the Christian. In John 10:14 Jesus claims to be this ‘Good Shepherd.” A certain claim to divinity. And a promise of complete provision. Follow him.