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Can We Find Peace? | When The Good Shepherd Holds Your Hand #1

When we lie down in bed, we are often bombarded with our thoughts: world issues, personal accusations, and more. Peace comes for the believer as we meditate on Psalm 23. Pastor Lutzer discusses two questions: Who is the Shepherd and what does He do for us? He’s the One who sees the whole pasture, looking out for us.

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Transcript: Welcome to “5 Minutes with Pastor Lutzer.” Thank you for joining us. We’re beginning a very special series of five episodes on the topic of “When the Good Shepherd Holds Your Hand.” It’s actually an exposition of Psalm 23 as well as some of the verses in John 10. Now if you were to ask me “Pastor Lutzer, what’s the purpose of these studies?” I could give it to you with a great deal of clarity. It is simply to be blessed by God. You and I know that we’re living in a world where there is so much tearing apart, so many accusations. We’re living in a time of polarization on every single level. Would you take out time with me to say we are going to meditate on who we are, the sheep of God’s pasture? And of course we’re going to be concentrating on the Good Shepherd.

If you know people who are obsessed with CNN News, be sure to connect with them and tell them to enjoy this series of messages and of course if you know those who are listening all the time to Fox News, the same message to them. Let’s put the world out of our minds for the next few moments and the next few episodes as we think of Psalm 23, arguably one of the most important and famous passages in the whole Bible.

I begin with a very personal word. I quote this Psalm almost every evening. When I lie down in bed, first of all I spend a few moments praying and then I go to Psalm 23, and I have to tell you I seldom make it to the end of the Psalm. Now you must understand that when you do this, sometimes you will be bombarded by all kinds of thoughts. Sometimes I find myself having to concentrate on Psalm 23. But when I do, peace comes to my heart and it will come to yours as well. And as this series continues I may be giving you some added advice on how Psalm 23 can bless your soul.

Well, let’s plunge in.

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside the still waters.

Just two questions today. First of all who is the Shepherd? Well, all of us know it is Jesus Christ who gave his life for the sheep. And that shows that we are very special and very precious to him. But very quickly what is it that He does for us? The Psalmist David says that because He is my shepherd. I shall not want. Of course, you and I need things to live even as sheep do. But the good news is that when we have Jesus, we have that which is most important and everything else takes second place.

But let’s look at the text. What does it say? First of all, very clearly, it says “…he makes me to lie down. Now shepherds will tell you that it’s very difficult to get sheep to lie down. And the reason is they can be startled so easily. Unless their fears are subsiding and they are at peace they will not lie down. As a matter of fact, once they are lying down, a rabbit running across the grass will startle them and when one is startled all of them are startled.

Not only that but the sheep themselves don’t get along oftentimes. You have a very angry old ewe who wants to exert authority and she goes around. And you’ve heard of pecking order? Well there is such a thing as “butting order” and she’ll do all that she can to disrupt everyone. Rams are the same way, wanting to show their masculinity, irritated when other people can sleep and they can’t, when other sheep can sleep and they can’t, and so you have all of this going on. It’s difficult for them to lie down. But thankfully the Good Shepherd is there to calm the sheep.

Not only that he gets you to lie down then he leads you beside still waters. I’m told that sheep don’t like to drink from running water. You take them to a stream. They stare at it but they won’t drink. And so what the shepherd has to do is to create a bit of an alcove, if I can call it that, where the sheep can calmly drink. Because unless the water is still they will go thirsty.

And then of course he feeds them. The Bible talks about the green pastures. He takes care of the sheep. I want to leave a thought with you today.

As far as the Shepherd is concerned, he knows the sheep. He sees the whole pasture. They don’t. Remember that the sheep that are most needy often get the most attention. Are you a needy sheep today? I want you to know that the Good Shepherd is looking out for you. He’s the one who gave his life for us. He redeemed us and he cares for us all the way to the finish line. So remember this today. As you go about your duty with all of its pressures, keep in mind that the Good Shepherd belongs to you if you’re a believer, if you are a true sheep. And as for today, well, you just go with God. 

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