Lord is My Shepherd, I Shall Not Want
As you know, David was himself a shepherd. He was known as the “Shepherd King” of Israel. But he saw Jehovah, the Lord God of Israel, as his shepherd. He speaks in this psalm as if he was one of the flock, one of the sheep. And it is as though he literally boasted aloud, “Look who my shepherd is — my owner — my manager! The Lord is!”
One day a man watched a shepered he was yelling and beating his sheep, the man stoped and asked why are you doing this is no way to tret sheep this the man replied iam not the shepered iam the butcher.
Lord is My…everything
Because after all, he knew from firsthand experience that the lot of any particular sheep depends on the type of man who owns it. Under one man, sheep might struggle, starve and suffer endless hardships. But under another shepherd, they might flourish and thrive contentedly. As it is with pride that he says, “The Lord is my shepherd.” He chose us, he bought us, he calls us by name, he makes us his own and he delights in taking care of us.
That last aspect is really what this psalm is all about. How the Lord takes care of us. So David continues by saying, “I shall not want.” The idea here is that the Lord supplies our every need. The NIV says, “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not lack anything.”
A little girl tried to quot ps 23 all she said was “the lord is my shepered and that’s all I want.”
Notice that our Lord supplies our every need, not our every want. As Paul told the Philippians, “And my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus…” (Philippians 4:19). The same one who sustained the children of Israel, the one who fed Elijah by the brook, the one who provided the needs of the disciples sent out without staff or shoes, has promised to provide our needs both physical and spiritual.
Let me tell you what a good shepherd is like. He loves his sheep. For him there is no greater reward, no deeper satisfaction, than that of seeing his sheep contented, well fed, safe and flourishing in his care. That’s what his life is all about, and he gives everything he has to it.
He goes to a great deal of trouble to provide them with the finest grazing, ample winter feed and clean water. He provides shelter from the storms, protection from the enemies and the diseases and parasites to which sheep are susceptible.
From early dawn till late at night the good shepherd is alert to the welfare of his flock. He gets up early in the morning and goes out first thing to look over his flock. He examines the sheep to see if they are fit and content and able to be on their feet. He can tell whether they are ill or require some special attention.
Throughout the day he looks over his flock to make sure everything is all right. Even at night, he sleeps with “one eye and both ears open”, ready at the least sign of trouble to get up and protect his sheep.
That’s the kind of shepherd we have. Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives his life for the sheep.” (John 10:11). Truly, “the Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want.”