The intent of this essay is to analyze and show an exegetical position of the Psalm. Throughout the Psalm one can non assist but see the image of a seasoned shepherd as storyteller. King David uses his experience and likely that of his family to convey penetration into the function of the shepherd. David makes a comparing between the natural shepherd and God as a shepherd. He subsequently moves to uncover the relationship between host and invitee, in which God is depicted as host and David his invitee.

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Exegetic and Analysis

Verse One

This Psalm commences with a confident declaration by King David, ‘The Lord is my Shepherd I shall non be in want ‘ ( Psalm 23:1 ) . The poetry starts with a metaphor which sees The Lord as both shepherd and King. Ellison states that, ‘whenever Shepherd is used metaphorically in the Bible, it means King. ‘[ 1 ]Ellison seems to propose that the mode in which David announces the Lord being Shepherd is of great significance because it implies that He is King and hence male monarch of David ‘s throne.

The word male monarch implies one with governmental powers and duty over his people. He would possess wealth and ( presumptively ) the luster of the male monarch would be reflected in the people under his regulation.[ 2 ]From this position it can be deduced that the Lord is to the full responsible for David. He has power over him and possesses wealth hence he is sustained.

With David ‘s declaration theanthropism comes into drama. This entails human signifier or presenting God with human characteristics.[ 3 ]The Psalmist therefore presents his Lord, the 1 who regulations over his life and directs his throne. Thus David besides declared Him as Shepherd. The word shepherd conveys go toing to, nurturing and protecting sheep, peculiarly those croping in the Fieldss. It besides refers to a Pastor, one who bears spiritual responsibilities and gives way to his fold.[ 4 ]Implied in the above position is the thought that the Lord protects, takes attention of, nourishes and provides religious way to David. It can besides be inferred that David is represented as a sheep since he presents the Lord as his Shepherd.

Some features of a sheep are: foremost, the shepherd easy persuades it ; secondly, it is to the full reliant on the shepherd for all that it needs ; and thirdly, it is really attached to the shepherd.[ 5 ]From the above definitions of King, shepherd and sheep there is a correlativity, which is, the Shepherd and King both have full duty and authorization over the sheep or the 1s that they lead. Harmonizing to Wilson, ‘Yahweh is “ Shepherd ” is consistent with claims elsewhere that He is “ King ” , since antediluvian Near Eastern Monarchs besides described themselves as Shepherding their people and understanding their Gods as carry throughing this function every bit good. ‘[ 6 ]Wilson ‘s position compares the thought of God as Shepherd over David and by extension the state of Israel and that of the close eastern sovereign.

An rating of Wilson ‘s statement suggests that shepherd refers to king, a position which is supported by Ellison ‘s afore mentioned statement. Additionally, it is clear that David did non demo himself as shepherding people but presents the Lord in this capacity, hence he lacks of nil. On the other manus it appears that the sovereign and their people viewed their Gods as their all sufficiency. This does non needfully emphasize that their God was maestro of their lives as Yaweh was seen as ultimate maestro of David ‘s life. David ‘s ability to govern remainders in the strength of the ultimate King, God, whereas the sovereign relied on their ain strength and wisdom to govern. David ‘s position of The Lord as his shepherd stems from the thought of theocracy, where the Lord is seen as the 1 who has the first and concluding authorization over himself and people of Israel. In the context of Psalm 23:1 the Lord is represented as David ‘s King. This denotes a synecdoche, which speaks of utilizing a portion to intend a whole, in which instance it non merely refers to David but besides to the people that he regulations.[ 7 ]It is interesting that David refers to the Lord as merely being, his Shepherd, by utilizing the word ‘my ‘ in verse one, when in actuality the people that he regulations are besides represented as being under God ‘s regulation. This would bespeak that this Psalm is overlaid with poesy.

Verse Two

Continued usage of theanthropism is, the Lord taking his sheep to bask fresh grass and to imbibe H2O so as to slake its thirst. Here David is presented as a sheep. Verbs are portrayed in this poetry as the Shepherd is seen in action doing his sheep lie down in exuberant grazing lands, besides as he strolls through the grazing lands taking his sheep. Keller noted that it is merely the shepherd who can liberate the sheep from anxiousnesss, hungriness and other emphasiss of life, merely as Jesus does for the Christian. Keller farther explained that green grazing lands imply proviso, which satisfies hungriness and in turn lead to ultimate peace.[ 8 ]

Verse Three

A close scrutiny of this poetry reveals that it opens with a contented sheep, whose thirst is quenched and who in bend feels strengthened. Personification is used as the sheep is given human qualities by the look used by the Psalmist, ‘He restores my psyche ‘ . The invigorated sheep now has to depend wholly on its Shepherd for counsel. This counsel is to be carefully followed by the sheep because something is at interest, viz. , his Lord ‘s name or the repute of the shepherd. The shepherd steering the sheep gives the thought of a human providing leading through waies of righteousness. Through this journey the Shepherd ‘s good name is preserved by the sheep ‘s obeisance to the Shepherd ‘s counsel. Therefore the Shepherd – sheep relationship is strengthened.

Verse Four

In this poetry David is represented as walking through a vale where decease is described as lurking over him like a shadow. David expresses assurance even in the face of danger because he finds comfort in his Shepherd ‘s rod and staff. Here David uses personification to cast visible radiation on the intent of the staff and rod.

From ancient times the rod and staff would non merely be used for soothing, steering and directing the sheep but besides for protecting the sheep from wild animate beings.[ 9 ]When applied to David ‘s fortunes, the staff and rod meant protection from enemies ; for illustration 1 Samuel 18:1-27, comfort in the times of problem and way to take God ‘s people. It therefore can be inferred that there is a close relationship between poetry three and four which indicate the double map of the staff and rod. The rod and staff that the Shepherd uses to protect him when he encounters danger is besides used to steer David in waies of righteousness for his name ‘s interest.

Verse Five

Here the scene alterations to one of host and invitee.[ 10 ]The host has the duty of supplying for David, his guest, in the presence of his enemies. David appears to be person who is extremely favoured and chosen by the host, his Lord, hence he is anointed by Him.[ 11 ]David besides states that his cup floods, meaning an copiousness which has occurred in his life due to an spring of his host the Lord.[ 12 ]

Verse six

Goodness and clemencies are personified and shown as following David every bit long as he lives. It should be understood every bit long as he lives he is expected to see his Lord ‘s goodness and grace ; hence he is able to bask the comfort of his Lord ‘s brooding all the yearss of his life. David besides uses exaggeration when he states the word ‘forever ‘ . It is non that he would literally brood at his host ‘s forever, for David himself died as recorded in 1Kings 2:10 and 1Chronicles 29:28. Therefore it should be understood as all the yearss of his life instead than everlastingly.

Inferred in this poetry is besides the thought of acceptance, for David who is the invitee, to brood in his host ‘s house all the yearss of his life would propose that the host has assumed full duty for David ; hence going portion of the host family, ( John 8:35 ) . This clearly shows the great impact that the host had on the life of the invitee that he should province that ; he would be a occupant in the host ‘s house every bit long as he lives. There is no vacillation on the portion of the host. It could be inferred hence that every bit long as people are willing to be portion of God ‘s household ; He will lief have them and demo his goodness and grace in copiousness to them.


This Psalm consists of two to parts ; the first depicting God as Shepherd and King, ( verses one to four ) and the 2nd, showing God and David as host and invitee severally, ( poetries five and six ) . This Psalm is a brilliant show of God ‘s activities in the life of David. Furthermore this transition seems to propose that David acquired a wealth of cognition and experience working as a Shepherd. It is with this experience he was able to capture the bosom and work of a Shepherd. In add-on, the host and guest speak of a continual relationship that God desires between Himself and His people.

This Psalm besides emphasizes entire trust on God and is of great comfort and encouragement to anyone who acknowledges The Lord as his or her God.

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