PSALM 23- Part 4 – He is with us with Rod & Staff

27.5.2024 | Artikkelit, Donne Europee, Donne Europee English


“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.” (V. 4)

Shepherds need rods and staff to navigate the terrain they walk on, also to help them guide the sheep, and to protect them from enemies. Long ago I heard the story of a naughty lamb which was very stubborn and always went in the opposite direction of the rest of the flock, sometimes wandering into dense bushes or near edges of cliffs from where the shepherd had to rescue him continually. One day the shepherd got frustrated with the little lamb because it was taking up too much of his time, and it caused the whole flock to become nervous. The shepherd loved this lamb, but he needed to discipline it, so he asked his brother to look after the flock while he took the naughty little creature to the workshop, where he laid it down on the table. The shepherd banged the lamb’s leg with a hammer, which caused it to break. He then lovingly set the leg with splints, resulting that he had to carry the lamb wherever he went and put it down to drink, to eat or to sleep beside himself. He looked after it like a mother would its dearest child. Once the lamb’s leg was totally healed; it refused to leave the side of its master.

Just so, our Good Shepherd sometimes needs to discipline us with the sole purpose of displaying His goodness, grace, and love while protecting us. The AMPL Bible says in Heb. 12:6 – “For the Lord disciplines and corrects those He loves, and He punishes every son (and daughter) whom He receives and welcomes (to His heart.)” Parents discipline their children because they want them to grow up to be obedient, honest, responsible adults with integrity. If we can accept Christ’s discipline, we will grow to love and appreciate Him even more. HE is the One who died and rose to save us. In John 10:11 Jesus says, “I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.”

Death is not the only valley that awaits us when we will finally be with our Lord forever. Perhaps you are walking through a valley of failure, sorrow, illness, despair, or loneliness. Our Good Shepherd, who has been through dark valleys Himself, never leaves you, and He is with you in the darkness as much as in the light, guarding you from evil, protecting you from harm. His rod and staff speak of His strength, love, protection, and comfort. No power can snatch you from His hand. Nothing can separate you from His love!  “So, we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.” (1 John 4:16)

“O come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the Lord our Maker. For He is our God, and we are the people of His pasture, the sheep under His care…” (Psalm 95:6 + 7) For the Lamb at the centre of the throne is our Shepherd; He will lead us to springs of living water. And God will wipe away every tear from our eyes. (From Rev. 7:17)


Myrtle Turunen