Saturday, October 6, 2018

A Foundation of Grace: Rest

The Lord is my shepherd,
I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside quiet waters.
He restores my soul;
He guides me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I fear no evil, for You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You have anointed my head with oil;
My cup overflows.
Surely goodness and loving kindness will follow me all the days of my life,

And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.-Psalm 23:1-6 (NASB)

A few days ago, my attention started being drawn to this Psalm.  I felt like maybe the Lord wanted me to share this as a part of this series on grace.  

At first when I started looking at it, I couldn't really see how it applied.  But now, after reading it a few times, and looking up some words in their original language, it makes more sense.

The psalm in its entirety speaks of the Lord as a shepherd, caring for us completely.  In it, we do nothing.  He does it all.  We have no need with Him caring for us.

He leads, restores, guides, protects, comforts, prepares.  He showers us with His goodness and loving kindness. He is perfect.

The psalm as a whole speaks of rest.  Grace is a place of rest.  It comes from the favor and kindness of God, and is not something we produce ourselves by our own efforts or our own works.

Verse 2 especially speaks of rest.  More than one word in this verse mean "rest".

He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters.

Lie down obviously means rest. But the word for lead, "nahal," also means "to give rest." The word for quiet, "menuchah," means "a place of rest."

This psalm as often read at funerals, but it is a Psalm for today, for us in the now. It is a picture of our life in Christ.

To read more in the series, please join me here, at A Foundation of Grace.

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