Last spring I was traveling through the state of Indiana, and failed to notice a turn sign for a particular highway. I traveled in the wrong direction for over an hour and ended up where I didn’t want to be. How frustrating!
Being on the right road is essential to getting where you want to be. In the 23rd Psalm we are told that the Shepherd “leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.” Now that’s good news – particularly if you want to end up where God wants you to be.
The word “paths” is literally the word for a track, or a circular rampart (which is a broad embankment raised as a fortification). According to Strong’s Concordance, it actually comes from a word that means to be clear or conspicuous (which a raised circular rampart would certainly be).
It is very similar to a circular athletic track where runners compete in a variety of races. Well, it’s hard to get lost on an athletic track. It just goes in a circle. There are not a lot of alternative routes or forks in the road! It’s pretty clear where the path goes, and which direction you should take.
Now the path of righteousness is like that. You see, the path of righteousness is the path of doing right. And if you listen to the Shepherd, He will always lead you down that path. The right thing to do is usually pretty obvious. The problem is that we’re too much like sheep – we wander off, and end up going where we shouldn’t go. But if we follow the Shepherd, He will always point us to the right path. Listen. If you are tempted to do wrong, you can be sure that it’s not the voice of the Shepherd.
“He leads me in the paths of righteousness.”
Say – are you vacillating on whether or not you should do what is right? Well, don’t give it another thought! Just listen to the Shepherd, and do it!