Quarantine Devotions at Home
April 25+26, 2020 — 2 nd past Easter
Psalm 23: 1 & 6
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. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His
name’s sake. Yea, 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. You prepare a table before me in the
presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over. Surely goodness and
mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
YOUR SHEPHERD—THE “HE IS”
FRIGHTENING FOE? OR BLESSED FRIEND?
Dearly beloved “saints” of God! “Saints,” as you know, are more than just kind and good
grandmas. “Saints” are more than just kind and good dead people who are in heaven. “Saints”
are definitely not dead believers to whom we pray! for we pray to God alone: “Call upon Me in the
day of trouble” (Psalm 50:15)! “Saints” are all Christians, dead and alive, even you, washed clean
through the blood of Jesus, declared holy and righteous by God’s grace—undeserved love and
pardon—for Jesus’ sake. His death has paid your sin’s punishment. His resurrection has declared
that punishment Paid in Full! . . . Now then, Dearly beloved saints of God! . . .
On the (old) worship calendar, today is Good Shepherd Sunday, the Second Sunday after
Easter. We remember Jesus the Shepherd who cares the utmost for His Father’s sheep. The
precious 23 rd Psalm quite naturally comes to mind, “The LORD is my shepherd.” Let’s look at two
verses–the first and the last—for this devotion.
Christians join with King David confidently confessing, “The LORD is my Shepherd, I shall
not want!” But we need to know, “Who is the LORD?” (Exodus 5:2). That question was first asked by
Pharaoh in mockery. You need to ask it seriously. Maybe you don’t want the LORD for a Friend
and Shepherd, when you know who and what He is??
LORD: The English word “LORD” in all capital letters refers to the special Hebrew name for
God—a name which the Israelites later on would not even pronounce lest they disrespect it.
When reading it, they simply spoke their regular word “Lord” (small letters in English) meaning
“master” The special name, however, was Jehovah, or Yahweh, meaning “He Is.” Ponder it
for a while—“He Is.” “Jehovah, Yahweh, the LORD” is the one who always is, from forever to
forever. He is timeless. He existed before this world, which He created. He is life. Life in this
world has come from Him. He, the creator of all, is above all. He rules. He is under obligation to
none—not to the devil, nor to any person. He is beyond our comprehension, ever-present, all-
knowing He is perfect and requires perfection. He is also judge. He will condemn and punish
everyone that does not meet His standards. He said to Adam, “In the day that you eat of it [the fruit
of the forbidden tree], you shall surely die!” (Genesis 2;17). The LORD means business:
Genesis 5:5 Adam lived… 930 years, and he died.
II Samuel 6:6-7 Uzzah put out his hand to the ark of God and took hold of it, for the oxen
stumbled. Then the anger of the Lord was aroused against Uzzah, and God struck him there
for his error; and he died there by the ark of God.
Joshua 2:9-11 I know that the LORD has given you [the Israelites] the land … the terror of you has
fallen on us …for we have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red Sea for you when
you came out of Egypt … As we heard these things our hearts melted….for the LORD, your
God, He is God in heaven above and on earth beneath.
II Chronicles 36:1 They mocked the messengers of God, and despised His words, and misused
His prophets, until the wrath of the LORD arose against His people, till there was no remedy!
Job 38:3 Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer Me!
Do you want that LORD for your shepherd and friend?—demanding and unyielding. He
sounds like an enemy. But before you answer, realize that there is more to the LORD, Jehovah,
He Is ! That “LORD” is also love. He is Truth. He is mercy. He is unlike Satan. He makes a
promise—every promise He makes is good and true—then stands by it. In His undeserved love, He
has promised your pardon. He laid your sins on His Son. This is also “the LORD!” Jesus, His
eternal Son in the flesh took your punishment for you. In Him the LORD forgives! He forgives the
intentional and bullheaded sins you have committed, the stupid and foolish sins you have
committed, the rebellious and willful sins you have committed, the sins of ignorance you have
committed, the sins of weakness, the sins of cowardly lack of self-discipline, the sins you don’t even
know. God have mercy on me a sinner! Trust Jesus. Trust the Shepherd, your crucified and risen
Savior, Brother, and Friend—the “LORD!”
Exodus 34:5-7 Now the LORD descended in the cloud and stood with him [Moses] there, and
proclaimed the name of the LORD … “The LORD, the LORD God, merciful and gracious,
longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving
iniquity and transgression and sin.
Psalm 32:1-2 Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the
man to whom the LORD does not impute [charge] iniquity [sin].
Isaiah 54:10 My kindness shall not depart from you, or shall My covenant of peace be removed,”
says the LORD, who has mercy on you.
This is the Friend you want! As Shepherd, He nourishes you physically with daily bread
and all that you need for this body and life. He tends and guards your life and health, even against
microscopic sicknesses! He leads safely against the big foes, the Red Seas of life and the Goliaths
that oppose you. He cares for you. You are on His mind every day. You are safe in His hands
every hour. He never forgets you. He does all this in love for your eternal good.
His ultimate purpose is not just to walk you physically through life on this earth, but to lead
you spiritually into His family and Kingdom by faith, through the Word and its message of
forgiveness. His ultimate goal is to shepherd you into The Holy Christian Church, the Invisible
Church of only believers, the gathering of all saints! He keeps you in that faith. By His love for
you and your love for Him, you strive to cast sin aside. He shepherds you even through death, when
the soul leaves the body and is welcomed into heaven and the body sleeps / decays in the grave.
At the Last Day, the great day of resurrection, He will re-unite soul and body, taking you to the
eternal mansions of heaven!
With such a shepherd you lack nothing. There is no reason to bemoan or regret all the
material “things” you don’t have, or the abilities, the experiences, the accomplishments, the good-
looks, the popularity, the influence, the approval, the fun, the friends, that you think you should
have. With the “LORD” as your shepherd, really, you lack nothing! Let Him lead. You follow.
In Him you are blessed with forgiveness, righteousness, life, and real life forever. His
“goodness” accompanies you every day. You are secure. His “mercy,” His compassion, love,
and promised faithfulness, all line up on “your side” every day for 29,200 days! if you live to be 80.
Thereafter, that same “mercy” is with you “forever,” for the full extension of “days” after this life
in God’s own “house.” In God’s own house, at peace with Him. Can you beat that?
Do you want the L ORD, JEHOVAH, HE IS , as your Shepherd? I was privileged to come
across an artist’s drawing of a shepherd, Jesus, carrying a sheep across His shoulders. That is fairly
common artwork. But this sheep was not a cute little lamb. It was a grown-up sheep, unkempt
and bedraggled, less than prime, maybe not far from being just an old bag of bones. But the sheep
was safe, with its head against its masters. And the Shepherd was pleased. —— It doesn’t matter
how old you are, that sheep is you. That sheep is each Christian. Without Jesus, you are
hopelessly lost, eternally separated from the blessings of God. But with Jesus you are safe and
secure, forever! Do you want the LORD for your Shepherd? Indeed! So be it! AMEN!