TV Transcripts

“We Lack Nothing” Part One
Broadcast #1615
September 17, 2023

Transcript of message from TV Broadcast 1615 -- taken from Closed Captioning Text

Phil: Well, praise the Lord! I’ve had several scriptures, you know, go through my mind at various times this week. And I guess as a preliminary thought, we are well aware, I think, that we live in a scary, uncertain world. And people react to it in all kinds of different ways.

The Lord has allowed us to live where we live and when we live. We’ve talked about that many times. But I’ll tell you, what we understand and what we believe, the convictions that hold our hearts together have everything to do with how we navigate all of this. And my mind went to, you know, from several scriptures, but one it settled on was one that we know very well, and I feel like it’s a good time to take a fresh look at “Psalm 23.”

And David was a young man who grew up in a difficult time. You talk about a crazy world, you know, there’s a certain amount of order even in our crazy world. But at the time he lived in, all you had was, I mean, every little kingdom, every little city was almost like a criminal gang. They lived to conquer one another, to fight one another.

Even mentions in one place in the scriptures that, you know, in the spring when kings go to war. It’s like that’s what you do this time of year. Everybody goes to war and sees who can whip the other one, and who can win the battle, and who can take all the spoils, and bring home slaves. And it was a rough time.

You think about battles that we had today and how people react to them. And yet, they had battles back in those days when the casualties numbered in the hundreds of thousands. Literally. I mean, it was a crazy time. This is the era, this is the time in which David grew up.

And, you know, we better have something on the inside if we’re gonna stand in this world. Amen? We better have a heart level conviction.

[Congregation] Yes.

That defines how we see ourselves. It defines how we see the world, where our hope lies. Because, you know, we got people that put their trust in their riches. They put their trust in the power they can achieve, they put their trust in their own ability. But we find a young man named David who didn’t do any of those things, did he? It wasn’t about how smart, how good he was and how righteous even he was or any of those things. It had nothing to do with any of that. But it had to do with one simple thing. And it’s the first five words.

I remember we emphasized that one time and I wanna go beyond that, but he begins the psalm with a very simple statement of fact, “The Lord is my shepherd.” Boy if you get that down in your heart and you know what it means, and it’s real, man, in one sense, it doesn’t matter what else happens. Anybody here need that? Yes.

Cause I don’t care who you are, there’s things that are fearful in this world, and we need to have us an anchor. Like, what the writer of the Hebrews, we’ve often referred to that. The passage where he talks about the hope that we have, and that is a confident expectation based upon God’s revelation about things that haven’t happened yet. A hope, an expectation.

That hope is what? What does he describe that? What does he liken that hope to in that passage of? Anchor. It’s an anchor, isn’t it? Yes. A ship needs an anchor in certain circumstances where the storm is raging. You better have something that can hold onto something that doesn’t move. And boy, I need something. How about you? Yes. The further we go, we better have an anchor.

Well, David had one, and, of course, we know that it’s interesting that he grew up as a shepherd. He was the youngest of a number of sons. And he got the job that probably nobody else wanted of being out there with his father’s sheep. And of course, that was long hours. But what it did for him was to reveal something, God used that.

You know God can use everything in our lives to teach us if we’ll listen, if we’ll be tuned in? There’s not a thing that happens in your life or mine that is not a teachable moment. You know, the expression. Everything is a teachable moment if we’re willing to be taught. I need to be taught. The further along that I go, the more I need that.

But the Lord is my shepherd. He knew what that meant. He knew the relationship between a shepherd and sheep. And yet, here he sees himself, not as a shepherd, the strong one who’s doing the job, but as one who needs a shepherd, one who needs somebody to watch over him. And so all of this that the Lord was teaching him through his relationship with literal sheep and having to provide for them, having to protect them, it became something where the Lord revealed to David, this is the relationship that I desire with you, okay?

Now, you know, we’ve emphasized the individual words, the Lord, there’s only one. You know, David lived in a time when every nation, as we’ve said many times, had its gods. And I wonder personally if a lot of that conflict and that warfare was really a conflict between the gods that were inspiring them. You know, I’m the best, and so I’m gonna mount an offensive, we’re gonna beat you this time. I don’t know, but whatever it was, they had their gods.

But David knew there was only one. Yes. I don’t just have one God who’s among many. I have the Lord, there is none other. Thank God, we can look to him and realize if we’re serving him, we serve the one who is on a throne. There is none other. Praise God! Is He the anchor of your soul this moment? Of course, I’m jumping ahead of myself there, but the Lord, and you have this sense, a Lordship of Somebody Who is in charge.

You know, we’re living in an era where God has unfolded a lot of His purposes that David didn’t know, but was able to sort of look forward to as God gave him a certain amount of vision and expectation. But we live with one who holds, as we’ve said recently, the keys of death and hell. He sits on a throne. All authority has been given into his hand.

Folks, that’s the one that I wanna serve. That’s the one that I want to recognize. And I don’t wanna just recognize it in this impersonal sense, like, okay, you know, I agree that he’s the Lord. It has to come down to something more personal and more present, doesn’t it? So, he doesn’t just say the Lord, he says, the Lord. What’s the next word? Is.

You know, there’s several ways to look at that. But one of them is, is what Carl just said, the present tense. We are really bad to live in the past or live in the future. We’re living afraid of what might be. We’re living with a baggage of things that have happened and we haven’t really let go of them. And yet here is David saying, “The Lord is my shepherd.” There is that present tense.

How many of you know that we’ve only got the present? That’s all you’ve got. That’s all I’ve got. There’s not one of us can go back and fix the past and redo it. We haven’t got a time machine, we can’t do that. Nor can we reach into the future and, I’m gonna fix that and everything’s gonna be okay. We can’t do any of that. We occupy a very, very dependent position.

But here is the awesome thing is that he is my shepherd right now. There is never a moment, not the single moment in the life of one who serves the Lord from their heart where he is not present. You remember “Psalm 46,” we’ve used so many times? He is an ever present help in time of trouble. And that word there is “relentlessly,” there’s a sense of urgency on his part that I’m there. I don’t care what it looks like, what it feels like, I’m there.

And you and I, does that make a difference if we can learn to reckon on his presence and know what that he meant, what he said? I will never leave you, never will I forsake you. Boy, we know that there are many times when it doesn’t feel that way, doesn’t look that way. But is that not the anchor that I need? I mean, if I’m doubting this, if I’m doubting what he’s saying right there, that leaves me in a very vulnerable place. I’m gonna start listening to the wrong voice. I’m gonna start feeling sorry for myself.

Of course, I know I’m not the only one that ever experiences that emotion. And a whole lot of others that are very, very natural to all of us. But I’ll tell you, in my darkest, weakest moment and yours, he is, he is, he’s right there. He is absolutely holding my hand.

You think of the sheep that David had to deal with. And I’m sure they were all kinds, some of ‘em were prone to wander. But nonetheless, there was that sense that David felt, the sense of responsibility. He knew what that meant. He knew that he was there, responsible for those sheep. And those sheep may have had their attention everywhere in the world, but David was still watching.

You know, I got somebody like that. You know you do. The one who spoke the universe in existence. Let that sink in. The one who said, let there be light, and there was light. The one who has planned everything from the beginning. You read the prophecies in Isaiah, you will see that over and over again, where the Lord through the prophet will sort of mock these gods.

All right, you tell me what’s gonna happen. You explain it to me. He says, I’m the one who’s planned everything from the foundation of the world. I foresee everything. I know everything. That’s the one in whose hand I wanna be. I’m not in the hands of this world. Whatever happens, whatever he allows to happen, he is, he is.

And yet it doesn’t stop there. The Lord is what? What’s the next word? My shepherd. What does that tell us? It’s got to be personal. This is not just a theological principle. Oh yeah, the Lord is good. He is overall and all these vague things. There has to be that sense that the one who created the universe is intimately connected to me. He knows where I’m at. He knows everything about me, and he loves me anyway. He’s my shepherd. I could look to him. I have every right to look to him. Praise God! Praise God!

Where are you at today? What’s going on? What’s the enemy putting in your head? He’s trying all kinds of things with me. Anybody here in that same boat? Yeah, he is gonna constantly try to fill our minds with his lies when God wants us to have this bedrock conviction in here.

And we talked about faith being the victory. This is the basis of faith. I’ve gotta have a relationship with God. And if I do, I have what I need. I’m jumping ahead here. But the Lord is my shepherd. He’s just not somebody else’s shepherd. Oh yeah, I see them down there. They’re special, but I’m, oh, poor me, poor me all. I’m just so bad or I’m so weak, he doesn’t care about me. Look what just happened.

David could have said that a lot of times, didn’t he? Couldn’t he? I mean, you remember right toward the end of his running from Saul, and he was over in having to hide out with the Philistines, and they wouldn’t even let him go to battle. And he went back and everything was gone, and his own people wanted to stone him. But what did he do? He encouraged himself.

Now, where would you find encouragement in a situation like that? You’re not gonna find it anywhere down here. But he encouraged himself in the Lord. And he went to God, he got the wisdom and direction that he needed, and God steered him right out of that. And instead of it turning out to be a defeat, it became a glorious victory.

I’ll tell you if we will learn how to acknowledge the Lord in every circumstance, the Lord is, present tense, my shepherd, and David knew what that meant.

Now, I think we’ve said many times, and we’re aware of the fact that sheep are not very smart animals. And here’s where I think a lot of people fall down. They can get religious. But thinking of myself as a weak, ignorant, some often foolish sheep needing a shepherd to watch over me because I’m not smart enough to watch over myself, and I can’t provide for myself, that runs absolutely contrary to man’s spirit of pride and self-reliance.

But here was David who was able to watch and deal over years with these sheep. He knew what it meant to be a sheep and need a shepherd. And here he is instead of, look at me and how strong I am, and how smart I am, he’s saying, I’m nothing but a sheep. And not only that, I’m not resenting that. I am thankful because the one that I serve is the Lord of all the universe. And I’m willing to take my place of-utter dependence upon him. That’s humbling, but it’s a blessing.

My God! Here we are talking about the scary world, but I’m not alone. Amen? The one who made this world, the one who is using it for the unfolding of his purpose. He’s in charge and he’s my shepherd. He’s not just a shepherd, he’s mine. I am looking to him this moment. I’m trusting in his word, trusting in his promise. He’s my shepherd.

But think about what he’s conveying here. You think David had to talk the Lord into this? Lord, I know you got more important things to do than pay attention to little old me. But would you please be my shepherd? This is the heart of God that’s revealed here. This is God’s heart toward you this morning and me. I long to lead you. I long to be with you in this crazy broken world. I don’t want you to run around being afraid or being angry, or being whatever it is that comes out of your nature. I love you, I care about you. You know what it means to have a shepherd, have a a true heart towards the sheep. But here I am, I wanna be your shepherd.

Think about Jesus, the great shepherd. I am the good shepherd. Praise God! I didn’t even look up John 10, but you can read what he says there. I’m the good shepherd. I give my life for the sheep. I know my sheep and I’m known of mine, and I give them eternal life. No one can pluck them out of my hand. The Father who sent me is greater than I and no man can pluck them out of his hand. That’s the heart, that’s the spirit behind it, is someone who is so great that he can rule the universe and yet he cares, and knows how many hairs you got on your head right now. And he cares about the things that you’re experiencing right now. Not only he cares, he’s using them for his purposes. Praise God! The Lord is my shepherd.

Now, in this particular translation, it says, “I lack nothing.” That’s pretty simple, straightforward language. How many of you feel like, oh, if only I had this, if I had that, I just don’t have enough courage. I don’t have enough this or that. I don’t either. You know, I don’t have what it takes to live in this world and do anything. And people who think they do are living in illusion.


Yeah. ‘Cause what’s they gonna profit when they gain the whole world and lose their soul? Folks, God has put us in a dependent position not because he’s mad at us, but because he loves us and longs to share his nature, his love with every one of his sheep. You think about the one who’s willing to not just be kind to us, but to give his life for us? That’s a shepherd I can trust. That’s a shepherd I can look to with every issue of my life.

But again, the thing David realized, if the Lord is my shepherd, I know what it’s like to take care of sheep. I watch out for them every day. I know they need to eat certain things. I know they need fresh water. I know that I’ve got to search that out and lead them and take them to the place where they have exactly what they need. And I know if a predator comes and wants to eat them, I know what to do about that too. I care about every detail that affects them. I don’t want them to go around thinking, oh, my God I don’t have something I need.

Is there a little bit of a lesson in that? How many of you go through life and think, oh, I don’t have what I need? The reality is if we are in Christ, if we are in Christ and we’ve given our lives to him, and we’re trusting in him, we have everything we need, everything we need.

Now that doesn’t mean we always lay hold of it. But do you think, honestly, that there is anything that you and I need to stand there in white one day, having stood up to everything the devil is allowed to throw at us? Do you think there’s a single one that’s gonna get there and, I can’t even remember the thought I started with, but do you think we’re gonna get there and find out we didn’t have something we needed or God doesn’t really care? God hasn’t planned this thing out?

Are we ever gonna have a time when God has to have an emergency meeting in heaven, because something has happened that he didn’t figure was gonna happen? He wasn’t prepared for it. Is there some need that’s gonna come up in your heart and your life that he did not anticipate and provide for completely? Is there?

Boy, do we act like that though, don’t we? Wouldn’t it be good to have this confession of David as the anchor of our souls, have it so embedded in our thinking? This is our worldview. This is how we see everything. This is like a pair of glasses. We see everything about the world and about ourselves through this lens. I’ve got somebody, the Lord of the universe. He cares about me. He wants a relationship with somebody like me. And not only does he want a relationship, but this relationship involves him giving me everything I need.

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