Christ has proven how God is good by being the good Shepherd who lay down His life for us. How do we know God is good to us? Because Christ died when we were supposed to die.
Christ has proven how God is great by rising from the dead, as proof that all sin has been paid for. How do we know that God is great? Because Christ rose from the dead.
We also talked about how God blesses us, through what He wants for us, first and foremost. David could have written anything after proclaiming that the Lord was his Shepherd, but he chose to write about how God leads us to lie in green pastures. He chose to write about how He leads us to still waters, and as such, our souls are restored. Friends, more than any blessing we could ask for, the best thing that God wants for each and every one who believes in Him – rather, the FIRST thing – is for us to have rest, peace, calm, and restoration.
Christ showed Himself as our good Shepherd by way of taking death that we deserved because of sin. And now that I think about it, I believe that the first manifestations of the wages of death in us show up in restlessness, conflict within our being, a anxiety, and a neglected heart. These were all things that Christ took at the cross, and all things that Christ cast away from us at His resurrection.
He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
Friends, we continue down this road of appreciating Christ as our Good Shepherd, by recognizing, that on top of our being at peace, what the Lord wants to do for us is to direct us. It’s not enough for us to have been made righteous by His finished work – Rather, it’s not just a state that we’re in, but we read here that it’s a path we go down. For Christ was not wasting His words when He was saying that He is not only the Truth and the Life, but He is the Way…
He’s our literal Way, not merely showing us the Way – No, friends, you see that David wasn’t wasting his words either, when he mentioned that Christ LEADS him. There was a time when I was younger and walking down Brent road, it wouldn’t be uncommon for folks to ask where this place was, or where that spot was. If they asked how to get to Teachers’ Camp or areas close to there, I’d give them directions, but even if they say that they understood what I told them, it was still not absolutely guaranteed that they would make it to where they want to go. I’d show them the way.
I live in another area now, and I don’t really have people pulling over to ask for directions when I walk around. Instead, I do remember at least one time when I volunteered to drive my car to go ahead of some folks. I remembered doing this because it would have been complicated if I gave them directions – they had to maneuver through a subdivision, and I didn’t know the names of the roads. This time, I knew they made it to where they wanted to go, because I led them.
It’s the same thing with us, folks – Christ doesn’t merely show us the path, but He leads us through the paths of righteousness. But here’s the thing – He goes much further than bringing us from point A to point B – see, He is the literal Way. What does this mean? Well, what it means to me is that I’m always in Christ, and I’m always on the righteous Way, no matter what direction I choose. The God who makes the crooked paths straight is faithful to be my Way.
And He does this, as you can see, for His name’s sake. What does this mean? It’s in His will to lead us. It’s in His will to be our Way – and to say He does it for His name, well it makes me think that He is our Way, that we and the world that sees us would know that He is also the Truth, and He is also the Life.
Christ, who is our Rest, our Peace, our Calm, and our Restoration – Here, we see that He is our Way, and He leads us, that we would shine the Truth of His righteousness.
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.
And we’ll top today’s walk through Psalm 23 with this – that no matter where we bring ourselves to, or no matter where we find ourselves, even if we do find ourselves in great danger in this reality, we can still say we shall fear no evil. Why? Well, apart from Christ being our Rest, Peace, Calm, and Restoration – He is all these things, but we can just draw comfort from the fact that all of Christ is with us, all the time. The Good Shepherd walks with us, in us, through us, and by us, in all of His capacity, with His staff to help us stand, and His rod to drive away any fear, any evil, and fear of evil, or any evil drawn from fear.
This is the Truth from which we move, whether we find ourselves in the valley, no matter how we find ourselves there. If it’s out of our own actions that we find ourselves in the shadow of death, behold – The Way is with us. Consequently, if the world drags us into the valley with them, behold – we are comforted still, by Christ, who is with us in the green pastures and the still waters – Surely He is with us, even in the darkness.
We give thanks and praise to God, who has given us such a complete salvation through Christ. He is our Rest. He is our Peace. He keeps us calm, and He restores us. Today, however, we learn, that He is our Way, and He is with us in our way, ready to protect, ready to bring us back up to stand, and ready to comfort us.
Thank you, Jesus.
Until the next post, God bless you.
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