This post is Day 16 in a series of studies about “Psalm 23”. I strongly suggest you begin with the introduction to this study, please click here to read it.

Feel free to comment below with your own thoughts about each verse and how you will be acting on each thought. Also, if you haven’t yet signed up to receive the notifications of new studies, you can do that today (the form is at the bottom of the page).

Psalm 23 – Day 16

Psalm 23:4

… your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

The Thought

For many of us a “rod” makes us think of punishment, of being beaten, but for a shepherd it is the way of encouraging the young sheep in the right direction. A way of keeping them on the path he wants them to go. The path that he knows is best.

The “rod” of discipline is mentioned several times in Proverbs, and would be a cause of argument in much of today’s society, for example:

Do not withhold discipline from a child, if you punish them with the rod, they will not die! (Proverbs 23:13)

For all of us, the Good Shepherd uses His “rod” to point us in the right direction, along the path that he knows is best for us as individuals. The rod in that case is His Word.

If you have been brought up with the impression that God is a very strict being, watching us from Heaven and ready to punish the least little sin, then think again today. Our Heavenly Father is the most loving, forgiving being that has ever existed and ever will exist. Do you know anyone else who would sacrifice his own son for you? Someone who would take the punishment that each of us deserves on Himself?

There has never been anyone, and there never will be anyone. God did it all!


Allow yourself to be encouraged today as you meditate on the following verses throughout the day.

Proverbs 4:11 I instruct you in the way of wisdom and lead you along straight paths.

John 10:3-4 He (The good shepherd) calls His own sheep by name and leads them out. … He goes ahead of His sheep and they follow Him.

John 10:11 I am the Good shepherd. The good Shepherd lays down His life for His sheep.

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