I do not know whether Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs was inspired from reading Psalm 23 of the Bible, or he got a revelation from God. Why do I say so? Because there are some similarities with what is said by David in his psalm, when he was looking after his father’s sheep and imagining how he positioned himself as a lamb and God as the shepherd.
Let us compare what is said of David in Psalm 23 (taken from the New International Version Bible) with Maslow’s hierarchy of needs (taken from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia).
1 The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. – Not mentioned in Maslow’s hierarchy needs
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, – Physiological
3 he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. – Safety
4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. – Esteem
5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. – Self-actualization
6 Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever. – Love/Belonging (Maslow didn’t mentioned that God owned us and He is the only one who has unconditional Love)
When we compare the psalms of David with Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, we can see that the God’s hierarchy of needs was so perfect, that David could say: “I shall not be in want.” This expression is never mentioned in Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.
David was a shepherd, although eventually he was later appointed and anointed by God to be king of Israel He was also able to write a song that is much more beautiful than Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. It also shows that the Bible is relevant for all times and is very complete and perfect.
If we want to be like David, to position ourselves as the Lamb of God and take God as our shepherd, we too will be satisfied with God and as David also says “I shall not be in want.”
With this kind of satisfaction, we are called to be the shepherds for others who are weak and unable to see the greatness of God. That is why Jesus told Peter to feed Jesus’ sheep. As can be read in John 21:17 Jesus said to Peter: For the third time he said to him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, “Do you love me?” He said, “Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.” Jesus said, “Feed my sheep (From the NIV Bible).
After Peter understood why Jesus asked him to be the shepherd of his flock, he then reminded us all to become a shepherd of and feed the sheep of God. This was written in 1 Peter 5:2: “Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, serving as overseers, not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not greedy for money, but eager to serve.”
Are you currently in a state of not being happy? Please note that the Lord wants to be your shepherd, and make you feel satisfied and happy. And the secret to get it is you have to start learning and be a shepherd for others.
– feed the people who are starving
– guide people to the right path
– encourage people who are treated unfairly
– respect others in front of many people
– encourage them to experience and enjoy the presence of God
You will be happy when you can serve others and make them happy.
God bless us all.
By Robert Tampubolon
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