Psalm 23 Part 7
— God is our Satisfaction and Joy. “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil. My cup overflows.”
Let’s think about sheep again for a moment. David was a shepherd and if you have been a shepherd in ancient Israel you would know that sheep has many enemies, not only, bears and wolves and lions, but insects and parasites. They say that some insects come and lay eggs, which become worms in the nostrils and ears of sheep, and what can happen is that when those eggs hatch, they can drive the sheep literally mad. They go mad and die. So what shepherds did was put oil on the sheep’s head. Today they put certain types of anti-parasitical properties in that oil that would prevent these parasites and flies to lay their eggs in their ears and nostrils. You see, to anoint the head with oil, means the shepherd is protecting the sheep from these enemies in the wild. What protects us from spiritual parasites and spiritual diseases? The Holy Spirit. I shall not lack joy and happiness in God. I shall not lack the filling of the Holy Spirit. David was anointed by the prophet Samuel to be the next king after King Saul disobeyed God. As it was the custom to put oil on the king when a new king was anointed in Israel, the Bible says that from the time when David was anointed to be king the Holy Spirit came upon David. David prophesied on multiple occasions as we see in the Psalms we read today and the Spirit of God abided on him. The Holy Spirit only permanently and powerfully abided on all God’s people after Jesus Christ ascended to heaven and after Pentecost (John 7:37-39; Acts 2:1-10). The anointing of oil on a person always signified the presence and working of the Holy Spirit in the Old Testament. Now we know from the New Testament that all believers in Christ Jesus are called kings and priests and have received the abiding Holy Spirit because Jesus has been exalted (John 7:37-39; 1 John 2; 1 Corinthians 12:13). We have all been baptised into Christ, into the Holy Spirit by faith in Christ Jesus. When we have the Holy Spirit as an abiding reality, our lives are filled with joy and we can say with David “my cup overflows.” We have joy inexpressible and full of glory as Peter the apostle says in his letter. We have this joy because we know Jesus paid for our sins and that by grace God forgives all our sins. Jesus becomes our soul-satisfier and satisfaction. Moses prayed in Psalm 90, “satisfy us with your steadfast love that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.” Jesus also said: “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst”. We are also commanded in the New Testament to be filled with the Holy Spirit continually (Ephesians 5:18). As believers in Christ, we shall lack nothing of the Holy Spirit because God is our joy in the midst of our enemies. “You anoint my head with oil, my cup overflows.”The presence of the Holy Spirit guards us from spiritual enemies.