“Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.” Psalm 23:4b

My previous writings on this verse explored God’s everlasting presence with us; we need not fear anything. Continuing with this, we can learn something very interesting about David’s analogy of God as his Shepherd. The second part of verse 4, “Your rod and your staff, they comfort me,” makes a connection between discipline and grace.  There are a few ways to translate the words “rod” and “staff” from the Hebrew, which will give us a deeper understanding of the meaning of this verse.

“Rod” (שִׁבְטְךָ֥ - shevtecha) can refer to a scepter that shows power and authority.  It can also be used as a stick to hit someone or something, as well as to discipline someone.  The other interesting meaning of the word “shevet” can be derived from a group of families (tribe) with one father over them.  “Staff” (מִשְׁעַנְתֶּ֗ךָ-meshantecha) is a stick that one leans on.

God’s rod reminds us of His authority over all dominions and powers.  It is used to help us stay on the path, or to get back to the path that He has for us. Sometimes, it is used to discipline us, and exhort us to move forward. On the other hand, it is also for our protection.  God protects us from “wolves” and any other harmful thing that may want to attack and devour us (figuratively speaking).  Yet, his staff is also there for us to lean on, to rest, and to find peace.

In closing this short series on Psalm 23:4, I want to encourage each of us to remember that even as you go through the valley that may reflect death, discomfort, and uncertainty, God stands right beside you.  He is the One guiding you, protecting you, and keeping you in peace as you journey through life.

You can find much comfort in the knowledge that His rod is there to help guide you  back to Him when you stray, and to stay on the path of righteousness. It is there to direct you, to nudge you forward, or to slow you down when needed.  It is also there to protect you from the evil one and his agents as you follow God and walk in His ways.

I find much comfort as I lean on this truth, and would like to encourage you to not only remember this truth, but to apply it to your life every single day.  Do not lose hope, my friend!  His word is filled with promises of His faithfulness to us.  Let me leave you with one such promise:

“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Rom 8:28

Shabbat shalom,

Moran


Did you know? — Lone Soldier

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28 Comments on ““Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.” Psalm 23:4b”

  1. Thank you for the understanding about his rod and staff. Now i see why my Yahweh my God have to use these spiritual tools to keep use from wrong doing and hurting ourselves and demonstrate His love for us. Because sometimes i don’t know when i am going astray, i get attractive to somethings of this world that look good, but in the end it leads me to wrongdoing.

    May God bless you today:
    Kenneth Fleet

  2. Thank you Moran for the explanation as I was totally confused. I am now able to use it in the proper context.

    God bless you as He uses you for His Glory.

    Best regards
    Angela

  3. This article gave me exactly what I needed this evening. I was searching for additional insight on this verse and found this piece via google. It really blessed me. Thank you and God bless you.

  4. Am so blessed by the word rod and staff I never know how important it is to me, guarding me to all true and benefit
    Thanks for renewal of my Faith more

    Belema Igbikisenibo

  5. Thank you so much for the beautiful way in which you shared your knowledge of the meaning of rod and staff. It has made this long time comforting verse open my heart even fiurther knowing the deeper wisdom of this truth.

    May God continue to use you for His Glory and for the enlightenment of His children.

    Julie Presley

    1. Thank-you. Just pondering the comfort of the rod and staff. Reading this verse at Mom’s funeral. The rod of iron, used to describe Christ’s rule, also gives a picture of complete authority.

  6. Thank you. I have pondered on this passage for quite some time. Thank you for shedding light on it’s meaning.

  7. Thank you for sharing your insight on rod and staff from Psalms 23. I memorized this passage as a child. But without understanding, how can you find comfort? Thank you and God bless!!!!

  8. This teaching puts one’s mind back in that place of rest, as we truly allow the Lord to be our Shepherd. Shalom and Blessings to you!

  9. Today I walked about in our garden listening to the Lord’s mighty wind just weeks after my son passed away. My son was taken in the wind in a kite boarding accident. He loved the wind and he loved Adonai. Leaning into ABBA in a great time of mourning I cried hugging my son’s tree that he loved and called his own. I heard Adonai’s mighty voice in his wind. It was this scripture pouring over me. I felt ABBA’s hand upon my shoulder. I know he holds my son, His son. I came to this scripture to dig deeper into His meaning and stumbled onto your page. Thank you kindly.

    In Messiah,
    Becca

    1. I totally connect with you, Becca. Father has been my refuge and strength since my son passed away 7 years ago. I can only tell you that if used as a springboard towards YHVH, our mourning not only turns into dancing, but into flying to higher dimensions of Heaven and getting to know Him face to face as we mature as His sons! God bless you. RoseMarie

  10. This is such great insight Moran, I am deeply encouraged! I plan to use this on Sunday, March 22nd at Calvary (and give you full credit!)

  11. It gave me peace. Understanding images or symbols. Good for teaching, Two ways, rest, guiding, understanding. And to lean on the staff, trust, and correct. With kindness and gentleness.
    Not beating, or harming anyone..Just for protection. Wisdom

  12. When I was a young woman, at a very troubling and rebellious time in my life, Yahweh let me have a dream and in the dream I was standing next to a brook and I could hear the words of the 23rd Psalm. I wouldn’t recognize the words until I found them again later in a bible.
    I just remember how humbled I felt when I awoke from that dream. I wondered at how he gave me those words in the midst of one of the most rebellious times of my life. Now I’m old and I can see how his rod and his staff has trained and comforted me throughout my life , my captivity. He never left me. He has taught me so much and like a little child there is so much more to learn.
    I love my Messiah, Yahoshua and I’m still learning to abide in Him daily. For by mercy and truth iniquity is purged.

    1. What a moving testimony of G-d’s faithfulness to you, especially in a troubling time of your life. Thank you for sharing!

  13. Moran’s writing.expounds upon the 23rd Psalm very well..reminded me of how God is watching our lives very closely and He is orchestrating the outcome of every single event , big and small.
    It’s so important to look back on our lives and remember how he has helped us and carried us as we continue to call upon His mighty Name and trust Him to lead us during these last days of history as we know it.

  14. I am thankful I came across this site. I look forward to reading more. Romans 8:28 is the scripture God recently placed on my heart after the recent loss of my beautiful daughter, Hannah and when I read this scripture again on your page, I wept. ALL things work for the good of those who believe, and this refers to our significant losses as well. I am confident I will see her again. God bless you.

    1. Dear Robin,
      We are so, so sorry for your incredible loss. Losing your daughter, Hannah, must be the most painful thing you’ve experienced. We are blessed that Moran’s commentary on Psalm 23 could be a source of comfort for you as you grieve. May you feel the LORD close to you now more than ever. Bless you!

  15. Thank you for this teaching, as it confirms what Adonai has shown me since I had a knee injury last Shabbat morning. As I used crutches or a cane, this scripture kept going over in my mind this past week. I also had shared other insights the Lord had shown me on my fb Thankful Thursday post,today.

  16. I respect your view and I completely believe on your analogy on the position of the phrase in that verse.

  17. Thank you for helping me to understand the part of psalm 23 about the Rod and the Staff, I could not get past that part of the psalm in my quiet time with the Lord this, I wasn’t satisfied with what I was reading,I had been searching scripture all morning,and then googled it,I found your site, and went ,and the Lord blessed me and opened my understanding, and at the bottom was the scripture Romans 8:28,a scripture the Lord said to me constantly for some time now, I didn’t understand why,but I trusted Him, and trust Him, and I knew in my heart that He lead me here to help me.Thanl you, and bless you

  18. Thank you father God, for leading me to this site. My sister gave me a stick she found on one of her walking trails. I had it in my mind to stain it and write a bible verse on it and use it as my rod and staff. I have a grandson going through youth troubles, l truly love him and worry about the kind of friends he is hanging around, he is hurt and trouble with anger and jealously. I thank my father God that my grandson communicates with me to tell me his issues. I pray that everyone that reads this will keep him in prayer. I pray he finds his way back to loving the lord as he did once. I know this verse was meant for my peace and for conformation that he will bring back my grandson with his staff and not let him stray away! Love my lord and savior Jesus Christ almighty.

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