Hello friends, I've been busy this week preparing for a house full of guests and making sure I get my church and schoolwork done. I am looking forward to seeing my family and friends this weekend. On Monday I talked about David's statement: "I shall not want." Today I want to continue our look at Psalm 23, focusing specifically on the phrase:
"He guides me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake."
In the gospel of Matthew, Jesus talks about the narrow and wide gates that a person can choose to walk through:
“Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it."
This passage in Matthew is what comes to my mind when I read vs. 3 of Psalm 23. David says that the Lord guides him along the path of righteousness. It is this path that leads to the narrow gate that Jesus mentioned. I think most Christ followers know how important the path of righteousness is-and that we must rely on the Lord to lead us. We do not have to be Christians long to figure out that our own path and our righteousness will only lead to the wide gate. It is the statement that David makes after this that I think most of us struggle with: "For His name's sake."
Why are we led down the path of righteousness? Or, what about an even deeper question: Why are we on this earth? This is a big, somewhat philosophical question that has been argued in the secular and religious arenas throughout human history. If in fact, you believe that we are a cosmic accident, then I can understand why you may believe that humanity has no purpose-after all, we are just a freak accident and will eventually disappear. In this case, it makes sense that we should collect and consume as much as we can and gain as much glory as humanly possible, all for ourselves. If, however, you believe that we were created, then it must have been for a reason. Quite honestly, I believe that David gives us our answer in Psalm 23. The reason that you and I choose the narrow gate and choose to be led down the path of righteousness, is because we recognize that we were created for one purpose: to give glory to our Heavenly Father. All that we do should be "for His name's sake." The more we recognize that we were created for a specific purpose, the easier it is to live that out. The idea behind Psalm 23 is complete dependence on God, and a recognition that all good things come from Him; because of this wonderful fact, all glory and honor belong to Him. God Bless.