If we are boxed in to a material view of life, this psalm is like a camera drawing back and showing the real context of our earthly journey. We see ourselves passing through a ravine oblivious to the dangers and destination. Here is vital information for those seeking their Creator.
We’re turning now to Psalm 23, possibly the most famous of all the Psalms, and I’d like to read the first four verses.
Our subject will be a spiritual view of life. ‘The Lord is my shepherd. I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures. He leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul. He leadeth 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 thou art with me. Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.’ And this fourth verse particularly, yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death.
Now, the material view of life sees no God. The material view of life sees no soul, no eternity, no creator. The material view of life sees none of these things. And this psalm, and particularly the fourth verse, is rather like a camera. And you aim it at maybe one or two people. And they’re standing, what, under a tree, or by a pillar box, or something of that kind. And those two people and the article, the tree, the pillar box, fill your viewfinder. And that’s all you see. You don’t know where they are. You don’t know the kind of country they’re in, whether they’re in a town, whether they’re in the countryside, what the scenery’s like. You don’t know that. Unless you take the camera and you move backwards, or zoom out, and so that the people and the object become very small in the centre of the picture.
And now you can see the surroundings. You can tell where they are, what kind of location it is. You can tell, you can see the mountains perhaps, and the background, and the sky, what sort of day it is. You’ve got vastly more information. True, the central objects, the people, you’ve got to peer a little harder at them, but you’ve got so much more information. And this psalm, this great poem from King David, really serves that purpose. It’s quite remarkable.
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