Robert McLaughlin Bible Ministries
AZ Conference 2008. Part 5. The Lord is the One shepherding me. Psa 23.
Sunday, January 13, 2008
PSA 23:2 He causes me to lie down in pastures of choice grass; He leads me to waters of refreshment.
Grace depends on God’s reputation not ours.
In verse 1, the Lord from logistical grace provides everything that we need so that we have no wants.
In verse 2, He provides provisions for us that cause us to rest.
In verse 3, He provides for us rebound for restoration and a pre-designed plan to live in.
PSA 23:4 In addition to this, when I walk through a death-shadowed valley, I cannot fear evil [the manner of dying]; because You are with me; Your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
In verses 1 – 3 David had been talking about the Shepherd. Now he speaks directly to the Shepherd. He had been praising the Lord, and now He is praying to His Lord.
It is so often in the valleys of our lives that we find the sweetest refreshment and fellowship alone with God.
Shepherds would not take their flock where they had not already been themselves.
To walk indicates the steady advance of a soul which knows its road, knows its destiny, resolves to follow the path, feels quite safe and secure, and is therefore perfectly cool, calm and collected.
In addition to living grace, the Lord has provided dying grace.
The dark side of the shadow is the experience of dying.
The valley is the place of shelter, and transport.
Death is merely a shadow.
Jesus Christ has conquered death.
Where there is a shadow, there must be light somewhere nearby.
“Evil” refers to anything related to dying.
God picks the time, the manner, and the place of your dying, so you don’t have to worry about it.
Confidence in God creates courage in the face of evil.
We can have no fear when going through our very own death-shadowed valley, because the Lord Jesus Christ goes with us.
This is David applying dying grace, occupation with Christ, and a personal sense of destiny to the problem of death or disaster.
Fear is an emotional sin, and is a sign that the believer has failed to use the problem-solving devices and spiritual skills.
The fear principle points to the sin unto death.
We must always keep in mind that when we take that journey through the death-shadowed valley, it is meant to be a victory lap.
Death has left its sting in the humanity of Christ, and has no more power to harm His brothers and sisters.
If He is with me through death, what else is there to be afraid of?
Your rod which is divine discipline and your staff, divine deliverance, comfort me.
The rod was used to discipline the sheep, while the staff was used to deliver and protect the sheep.
The purpose of divine discipline is to lovingly bring us back into line.
Hospitality depends on the host, not the guest; this is a grace metaphor.
He is leading me to my destiny of becoming a spiritually mature believer.
He is leading me to enjoy a happy death.
He is leading me to a great forever after.
The first seven verses in this passage bring out the principle that the pastor is the best qualified person to determine what men in the congregation can serve in this capacity.
“Deacons” – masculine accusative plural – diakonos = a waiter, or a minister.
It also means to render service or administration.
It means to be a deputy in the local church.
Dignity – adjective semnous = worthy of respect, honorable, noble in character, serious, and worthy.
Not double-tongued – “me dilogous” = to say one thing but to mean another. No one can ever be effective in administration when they say one thing and mean another. They should not be hypocrites or phonies. Dilogous means deceitful, hypocritical in speech, sort of like a politician.
The higher you go in any form of leadership, the more you must be free from any form of slavery.
Too much alcohol destroys brain cells, destroys the ability to concentrate, destroys self-discipline, destroys good health and vigor, which is all necessary to fulfill leadership responsibility.
1TI 3:8 Deacons must be worthy of respect, not given to double-talk (hypocrisy and lack of integrity), not a slave to alcohol and not having an eager desire for dishonest profit.
“Mystery” – accusative singular noun musterion = the mystery doctrine of the Church-age.
a. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit.
b. This is the dispensation of the unique PPOG.
c. Unique Equality in the PPOG.
d. The Unique Portfolio of Invisible Assets.
e. Two Unique Royal Commissions for every Church-age Believer.
f. The doctrine of the Church-age is the unique mystery doctrine.
g. The body of the Church-age believer is indwelt by each person of the Trinity.
h. The Unique Availability of Divine Power.
i. The Age of No Prophecy.
J. The Church-age is the dispensation of invisible heroes.
Clear – adjective kathara = a pure conscience, one that is clean from that which corrupts, one that is free from prejudice and also free from guilt.
Tested – pres-pass-imp – dokimazo = to be tested through trial and pressure.
Dignified – noun semnas = worthy of respect, honorable.
This phrase applies to the heathen practice as well as the Jewish practice of polygamy which is having more than one mate.
Managers – pres-mid-part – proistemi = to superintend, to preside over, to be the head, to govern, to manage, to rule.