StoneBridge Community Church
Psalms Greatest Hits - Psalm 23
Senior Pastor Jon Saur
Locations & Times
  • StoneBridge Community Church
    4832 Cochran St, Simi Valley, CA 93063, USA
    Saturday 5:15 PM, Sunday 5:20 PM

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Psalms Greatest Hits

The Psalms are the Bible's guide to worship. They guide us through normal times, times of despair and times of deep joy. They help us understand how our emotions relate to God.

This sermon series will highlight five classic Psalms, in the hopes that we will learn how to worship God throughout our days.
Different Translation

Here is the alternate translation that Pastor Jon used for Psalm 23 in the service:

Psalm 23 - A David Psalm

The LORD is my shepherd,
I shall not want.
In grass meadows He makes me lie down,
by quiet waters guides me.
My life he brings back.
He leads me on pathways of justice
for his name's sake.
Though I walk in the vale of death's shadow,
I hear no harm,
for You are with me.
Your rod and Your staff -
it is they that console me.
You set out a table before me
in the face of my foes.
You moisten my head with oil,
my cup overflows.
Let but goodness and kindness pursue me
all the days of my life.
And I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
for many long days.
Walter Brueggemann

In the sermon, Pastor Jon referenced the work of Old Testament scholar Walter Brueggemann. Brueggemann divides the Psalms into three basic categories:

Psalms of Orientation
Psalms of Disorientation
Psalms of New Orientation

Psalms of Orientation focus on moments "of well-being that evoke gratitude for the constancy of blessing."

Psalms of Disorientation focus on moments "of hurt, alienation, suffering and death. These evoke rage, resentment, self-pity and hatred."

Psalms of New Orientation focus on moments "of surprise when we are overwhelmed with the new gifts of God, when joy breaks through despair. Where there has been only darkness, there is light."

The Text in Context

"It struck me as I was studying this psalm that there are really only two options in life. If the Lord is my shepherd, then I shall not want; but if I am in want, then it is obvious that..." Click link to read more.

I. Brueggemann's way of viewing the Psalms

II. Psalms of Orientation

III. Psalms of Disorientation

IV. Psalms of New Orientation

V. Psalm 23
A. Meadows
B. Valley of Death's Shadow
C. House of the Lord

VI. The Main Point

1. Identify which type of Psalm discussed in the sermon reflects your life currently. (Orientation, Disorientation, New Orientation.)

2. Imagine your life as one of the three scenes in Psalm 23. (Meadow, Valley, House of the LORD.)

3. Imagine God being present with you in that scene.

4. Pray that your awareness of God's presence in your life would deepen.

5. Reach out to someone you trust and discuss how you might practice being aware of God's presence in your life.

1. The opening line of Psalm 23 declares, "The Lord is my shepherd." What does it mean to have the Lord as our shepherd? How does this image of guidance, care, and protection challenge our notions of personal autonomy and control? How can we cultivate a mindset of following God's lead in our daily lives?

2. Psalm 23 is rich in symbolism and imagery, depicting God as a shepherd and the believer as a sheep. What aspects of a shepherd's care and a sheep's reliance do you think the psalmist is trying to convey about the relationship between humans and God?

3. The psalmist speaks about walking through the "valley of the shadow of death." In our own lives, we often face challenges and difficulties. How does the psalm's message of God's presence and protection during such times provide comfort and hope? Can you think of personal experiences or stories that resonate with this theme?

4. Psalm 23 mentions God providing for the believer's needs, including "green pastures" and a "table prepared." How does this message of contentment and provision relate to the modern pursuit of wealth and success? In what ways can we apply the psalmist's perspective to our own desires and ambitions?

5. The psalm talks about God restoring the soul and leading us in paths of righteousness. How do you understand the concept of spiritual restoration? What might be the significance of righteousness in this context? Can we actively seek such restoration and guidance in our own lives? If so, how? If not, why not?

6. The most important line in Psalm 23 may be "You are with me." Whatever season of life we find ourselves in, God is with us. Can you think of any practices that will help you cultivate an awareness of God's presence in your life?

In response to the horrible wildfires in Maui and in partnership with Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, feel free to make a donation to StoneBridge (designated Maui). Click below to donate online.

New session begins Wednesday, Aug. 23 @ 7pm. ALPHA is a practical introduction to the basics of Christianity. ALPHA is informal, friendly, and provides a safe space for questions and discussion. Dessert and childcare provided. Call Mike Patrella at 805-297-3445 or click below for more information or to sign up.

Starting the first weekend in October, StoneBridge will be launching a new series – called The Rise and Fall of King David. This series will insightfully journey through selections from 1 and 2 Samuel. Whether in-person or by Zoom, experience your own spiritual blessing by facilitating or hosting a new Fall growth group. No prior experience is necessary. Sign up on your connection card this weekend or visit the StoneBridge website (click below).

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