But the psalm’s language and imagery may be more fitting for the season of Easter when the Church tries to discern how to live in light of … Continue reading "Commentary on Psalm 23" I am inclined to see two images in the psalm, that of the shepherd (vv. ), Mounce’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2006), Renn, Stephen D., Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words: Word Studies for Key English Bible Words Based on the Hebrew and Greek Texts (Peabody, Massachusetts: Hendrickson Publishers, Inc., 2005), Richards, Lawrence O., Encyclopedia of Bible Words (Zondervan, 1985, 1991), Sakenfeld, Katharine Doob (ed. God “saved (Israel) for his name’s sake, that he might make his mighty power known” (Psalm 106:8). Many of David's psalms are full of complaints, but this is full of comforts, and the expressions of delight in God's great goodness and dependence upon him. a. Some even see the imagery of a guide in verses 3 and 4. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. and cast away their cords from us; with relation to the Lord and his Anointed, whose laws, ordinances, and truths, they call "bands" and "cords"; so Arama interprets them of the law, and the commandments; or a "yoke", as the Vulgate Latin, Septuagint, Syriac, Arabic, and Ethiopic versions render the last word; and the phrases in general express their irreverence of God and the Messiah, their rejection Christ and his religion; their non-subjection to him, and their refusal to have him to rule over them; and their disesteem and contempt of his Gospel, and of the ordinances of it, and of the laws and rules of his government in his churches: and also they show the wrong notion that carnal men have of these things that whereas Christ's yoke is easy, and his burden light, Matthew 11:30; his Gospel and the truths of it make men free from the slavery of sin and Satan, and from a spirit of bondage, Romans 8:15; and true Gospel liberty consists in an observance of his commands and ordinances; yet they look upon these things as bands and cords, as fetters and shackles, as so many restraints upon their liberty, which are not to be bore: when, on the other hand, they promise themselves liberty in a disengagement from them, and in the enjoyment of their own lusts and sinful pleasures; whereas thereby they are brought into bondage, and become the servants of corruption. “Your rod and your staff, they comfort me” (v. 4c). He restored my soul = That's Healing! The work of righteousness in peace. For them, it truly was the valley of the shadow of death. Psalm 23:4, ESV: "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." The word translated "cords" is a stronger word than that which is rendered bands. A shepherd would prepare a table for his sheep by scouting ahead to find good pastureland free from predators and poisonous plants. To be invited to God’s table is the ultimate honor. Psalm 2:3. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. The center point of this psalm is “for you are with me.” In the original Hebrew language, there are 26 words before this phrase, and 26 afterwards (Limburg, 74). Fortunately, I had insurance that would allow my family to weather the storm financially. The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. Whole Psalm. 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