Psalm 23: 1, 4
The Lord is my shepherd…
I will fear no evil; For You are with me;
Your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
John 10: 11, 15
I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.
…I lay down My life for the sheep.
Every day we all need continual reminders of how much God loves us. Every day more likely than not we’re going to mess up somewhere; worried thoughts, a careless word comes out to another or towards us and we need comfort.
The Bible describes God as the God of all comfort, not the God of all condemnation. (Romans 15:5, 2 Corinthians 1:3). Today when we come to God He will only ever embrace us, love us and comfort us. (Romans 8:1, Luke 15:20-24)
David wrote in the famous Psalm 23, that The Shepherd’s rod and staff bring him comfort. The rod the shepherds used were to protect the sheep from wild animals. They were either a separate stick, like a policeman’s club made of wood with a knob on the end of it to be used as a weapon; or the other end of the Shepherd’s staff, the crook/hook end was used to catch the sheep if they fell.1
Jesus will never use the rod to beat our enemies one day, and turn around another day and use it to beat us, NEVER! God ‘can never’ go back on the finished work of Jesus on the cross. Sin has been judged once and for all, so that we will never be judged or condemned by believing in His Son, Jesus Christ. (Romans 8:1, Romans 6:10, Hebrews 10:10) God is just God. (Romans 3:26) Now that sin has been punished, the rod of judgement against sin can no longer be used against us. (Exodus 17: 5-6)
Isaiah 54:8, 10
…with everlasting kindness I will have mercy on you. ‘ Says, the Lord, your Redeemer.
For the mountains shall depart and the hills be removed, but My kindnessshall not depart from you, nor shall My covenant of peace be removed’…
The forgiveness of all our sins comes through Jesus Christ. (Acts 13:38, Ephesians 1:7) We do not have to come to God, confessing our sins in order to avoid punishment, in order to be forgiven. He forgave us all our sins, before we had an opportunity to confess them. (Romans 5:8) He loves us. (1 John 4:10)
There is no condemnation to be feared when coming to God at any moment of any day, regardless of what we have just done, He will only ever comfort us. (Romans 8:1, Hebrews 8:12) God did not send Jesus into the world to condemn us, but to save us because He loves us. (John 3:17) His rod against our entire life of sin and death through the body of Jesus Christ and his staff that rescues us out of danger can now give us complete peace and comfort. (Romans 5:1, Hebrews 2:14-15, Colossians 1:21-22) We have been made righteous, sin-less in God’s sight. (2 Corinthians 5:21, Isaiah 61:10)
May you feel the comfort of His love surrounding you today with whatever you may be going through. The Lord, your good shepherd is with you. Amen.
Wright, Fred. Manners and Customs of Bible Lands, 1953.