Monday, November 2, 2020

Your Rod & Staff

 By: Joanne Viola

“Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.” (Psalm 23:4b, NLT)


The shepherd’s rod was about two feet in length, and usually made of oak wood which he had personally searched and found himself. They were tools meant to bring comfort and safety for fearful sheep. Let’s take a closer look at them.

The rod was used to keep sheep safe. It was the rod which could be thrown if an animal was moving in too closely to the sheep. The rod was used to part the wool of the sheep to examine deeply the condition of the skin and fleece of the sheep. In the same way as we submit ourselves to the Word of God, it will guard us from the enemy of our soul. God’s Word will also search our hearts and reveal any hidden sin and right the wrong in our lives.

While the rod was a tool of authority, the staff was a tool representing the kindness and the longsuffering of the shepherd.

The staff was often used to bring sheep together. It was important especially in bringing a newborn who had wandered back to its mother. The crook of the staff was also used to draw or pull a sheep closer to the shepherd, and in so doing, the sheep came to trust the caring of the shepherd.

The staff was also used to guide the sheep. The caring shepherd used the staff to nudge the sheep along, guiding them in the path he knows to be best for them.

The staff was also used to save sheep when they became entrapped in briars and thorns. With the use of his staff, the shepherd was able to part the bushes and free the sheep.

In every situation, challenge, and circumstance, there is a comfort and confidence that comes to us, God’s sheep, in knowing our Shepherd will keep us safe and guide with His rod and staff.

“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.” (Psalm 139:23-24, NLT)

Image by Jim Black from Pixabay



  1. Sometimes the very thing--God's staff, pulling me back from where I've wandered--is what I resist and resent, Joanne. But with these truths in mind, I'm trying to remind myself to be grateful for all the ways He keeps me going in the right direction. Great post!

    1. I so agree, Beth. May we remember, He only uses it to guide us into His best for us. Thank you for sharing here!

  2. I'm thankful for God's rod and staff to protect me and pull me back from wandering.

    1. Me too, Barbara. Our Shepherd uses it to pull us back into where we belong.


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