By Pastor Bob Rasmussen
- Much of what I will speak on emanates from the following scripture:
- Psalm 23 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.4 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.5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
- I just want to look at this scripture verse by verse
- Psalm 23 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
- David himself was a shepherd
- David knew what he was shepherding – sheep – expound
- David knew that as a shepherd, his job was to take care of his flock – and he was asking God to do the same
- 2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
- Sheep are not fond of swimming in the water, especially running water. Running water is proved to be dangerous not only to sheep but to a lot of animals. There are three main reasons that it becomes a potential danger to sheep.
- First, because of the slow-moving speed, sheep can be easily swept away in the fast-moving water.
- Second, in case of rocks in the water, sheep seem to lose their balance while walking.
- Last, but not least, sheep’s wool gets soaked, so becomes heavy very fast
- A shepherd does 4 things for a flock
- Protects them
- Feeds them
- Provides for them
- And leads them
- Green pastures – not what we know in Wisconsin
- he leadeth me beside the still waters.
- He knows the area
- He knows the ins and the outs of the land
- Our Jesus, the Good Shepherd has knowledge of everything – made it all
- Isaiah 49:9 That thou mayest say to the prisoners, Go forth; to them that are in darkness, Shew yourselves. They shall feed in the ways, and their pastures shall be in all high places.10 They shall not hunger nor thirst; neither shall the heat nor sun smite them: for he that hath mercy on them shall lead them, even by the springs of water shall he guide them.
- The amplified says it this way:
- This is what the Lord says, In a [e]favorable time I have answered You, And in a day of salvation I have helped You; And I will keep watch over You and give You for a covenant of the people, To restore the land [from its present state of ruin] and to apportion and give as inheritances the deserted hereditary lands, 9 Saying to those who are bound and captured, ‘Go forth,’ And to those who are in [spiritual] darkness, ‘Show yourselves [come into the light of the Savior].’ They will feed along the roads [on which they travel], And their pastures will be on all the bare heights. 10 “They will not hunger or thirst, Nor will the scorching heat or sun strike them down; For He who has compassion on them will lead them, And He will guide them to springs of water. Continuing with the Psalm 3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.4 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
- I definitely need a shepherd
- If I follow Jesus, then I can be righteous
- If I follow Jesus and my life has an impact, He gets the glory
- The staff and the rod
- The staff is used to guide
- The staff is used to correct
- The staff is used save
- The rod – the rod
- The image of Jesus growing up – surreal
- The reality of who He is
- He has all power and authority
- Rod was used to defend the sheep from bears and other predators – you hear me predators
- How much more powerful is a rod yielded by the king of the universe against our predators
- 5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies:
- Love the imagery
- I would have written it differently:
- Why in the presence of my enemies?
- Why am I at the table in the middle of: (repeat)
- Financial struggles
- Because while I am in His presence, he can do what he does
- In sickness he can heal and comfort
- In sadness he can restore joy and hope
- In loss, he can fill the void in our souls
- In finances he can bring new opportunities
- In addiction he can break chains and set people free
- In all of this, we get the goodness of God and He gets all the glory
- The enemies will fret, but the world will see your life and wonder how?
- They will want a seat at the table
- But we all have to do something, and that is to say yes – receive Jesus
- We need to sit at that table
- We need to focus on the one who set the table
- We need to be hungry at the table – for His Word and what it says about Him as well as us – Diana Prime
- How often do we get too busy to spend time at the table
- But sometimes, sometimes, others can slip onto the table
- Giglio story about how quickly someone joined the table
- Sit in chair – that is how quickly the enemy can sit at the table
- But that is a table prepared for me! The enemy can’t come
- How about Adam and Eve – Garden of Paradise
- The enemy is bold, he showed up to Jesus:
Luke 4:1 And Jesus being full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness,2 Being forty days tempted of the devil. And in those days he did eat nothing: and when they were ended, he afterward hungered.3 And the devil said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, command this stone that it be made bread.4 And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.5 And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.6 And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.7 If thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be thine.8 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.9 And he brought him to Jerusalem, and set him on a pinnacle of the temple, and said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down from hence: 10 For it is written, He shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee:11 And in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.12 And Jesus answering said unto him, It is said, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.13 And when the devil had ended all the temptation, he departed from him for a season.
I think one of the main missions of the enemy is challenge the character of God and fill us with a thing like anger, bitterness and unforgiveness.
Are we saying any of these or feel any of these statements? I am weak and powerless. I am unlovable to God and others. I can’t be used by God because of my past. I am worthless and irrelevant. I am rejected and abandoned. I am deficient and incomplete. I am alone and no one cares about me. I can’t have peace in my life. I have no purpose in this life. I am ordinary and average.
If the answer is yes, the enemy might already be at your table.
“Don’t give the enemy a seat at YOUR table”
“Don’t give the enemy a seat at YOUR table”
And the best way to get that seat back, get the enemy out to render his lies ineffective is with the truth of Jesus.
Go to the Table – and just like Jesus, we can use the Word!
I am weak and I am powerless. You may be, but God’s strength is more than sufficient.
2 Corinthians 12:9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
Nobody loves me, even God. God loves you with an everlasting love.
Jeremiah 31:3 The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee
I can’t be used by God because of my past and scars. Nope! God has blotted out the sins of your past.
Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.
I am worthless and irrelevant. You are God’s pleasure, you are special.
Deuteronomy 7:6 For thou art an holy people unto the Lord thy God: the Lord thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth.
I am rejected. I have been abandoned. God has adopted you into His own family
Ephesians 1:5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
I am less than and incomplete. God has made you whole and complete
Colossians 2:10 And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power.
I am alone. No one cares about me. God cares about you and is with you.
1 Peter 5:7 Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.
There is no peace in my life. God will give you His perfect peace
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
I have no purpose. God has great plans for you in this life. God has great plans for you
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.
I am ordinary. I am average. You are extraordinary and unique
Psalm 139:14 I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.
The central message of Don’t give the enemy a seat at YOUR table is to take captive our thoughts. There is indeed a battle for our minds.
The enemy is a killer – he may show up and be full of FOMO – fear of missing out – he did it with Eve
Satan doesn’t need to scare us into submission. He simply manipulates the fears and desires we already have.
Need to define our lives by His word, not the enemies, and not just based on our past.
We all have scars, but we are not defined by them. Cutting story
He has scars. And his scars mean I am loved – forgiven – adopted, plans for me, hope, paths of righteousness
Paid for with a high price.
The war has been one, and Jesus won – but there are still battles to be fought.
Ask God to define the enemies that are lurking.
The maker of everything has prepared an opportunity for us!
Write our story according to the word of the Lord
In the process, people will want to sit with the one your are with because of the good that he does for you and He gets the glory.
On my next message I will be focusing on another area of concern based on this scripture:
2 COR 14-15 14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
Sometimes, we may have invited the wrong people and we need to ask ourselves “Are You Invited?”