THE Lord is My Shepherd

Pixabay (Public Domain)
This photo is so interesting. It appears that the shepherd is wearing a gold ring. If you look closely you may see what looks like a cataract covering one of his eyes. Those two things together, particularly the ring, seem somehow contradictory on an old man wrapped in a burlap bag.

What I love about the photo is the lamb in the arms of the shepherd. The little thing knows where he is and just how good it is to be there.

He is not like those poor sheep from Matthew 9 who are “…harassed and helpless.” Helpless this little lamb is, but he’s safe in the arms of the shepherd. Harassed he certainly isn’t because he is safe in the arms of someone a lot bigger and stronger than anything that might be bent on harassing him.

And, from his posture in the picture, that little lamb knows just how safe and secure he is! He knows HIS shepherd.

But when I look at the first few lines of Psalm 23, there are no contradictions.

The Lord is my shepherd…

Don Baker writes about the uniqueness of our Shepherd in a little volume entitled The Way of the Shepherd.

“A band of sheep can stretch out for miles, be herded by many dogs, and be led by a nanny goat or bellwether ram. But they will tolerate only one lead shepherd."

It is not “A” shepherd, one of many, in Psalm 23. It is “THE” Shepherd, Baker goes on to write:

“WE HAVE BUT ONE SHEPHERD...

“There was and is not other like Him.

“There need be no other like Him.

“He stands alone and above all others…

“He displays
    constant alertness,
        continuing awareness, and
            incomparable power.

“We have but one Shepherd.

“One is all we need.”

In the verses from yesterday’s post we were reminded that our Shepherd has a vested interested in us.

Know that the Lord is God it is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture” (Psalm 100:3).

Not only is the stamp of ownership written on us, but our Shepherd MADE us for Himself. And then, when someone tried to steal us away from Him, He bought us back at the cost of His only Son’s life.

Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand is not the shepherd who owns the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf comes and attacks the flock and scatters it. The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep” (John 10:11-13).

There is no human shepherd, no matter how good a shepherd he might be, who can match the connection between us and THE Shepherd.

The One. The Only. The Best. Like our little lamb in the photo we can lay our heads against his breast and rest securely in His grasp.

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