Psalm 51

David was overcome by strong emotions and passions in the story in 2 Samuel 11-12. God’s question to David is, “Why have you despised the word of the LORD, to do what is evil in His sight?” and the consequences are connected to “by this deed you have utterly scorned the Lord.” We can list David’s sins and yet miss the fact that God’s word speaks to us about our daily walk before God. This Word is good and sweet like honey and precious and pure like refined gold and is for us today. It tells of God’s righteousness, His goodness, and our errors and needs.

What does sin do to a person? Psalm 32 tells us: “Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man against whom the LORD counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit. For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer. I acknowledged by sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD”, and you forgave the iniquity of my sin.” (Psalm 32:1-5) The contrast is between the blessed forgiven one and the heavy weight of God’s hand; between the blessed one whose sin is covered to the wasted, weakened one who tries to cover his own sin; between the blessed justified one who speaks to confess his sin and the one who groans all day long.

How can sinners come before a holy, righteous God? Psalm 52 is an example for us to follow.

Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love;
according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions.
Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.

What do we need the most from God? Mercy. Depend on His love and compassion to come to Him with your sin, come to be cleansed.

For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me.
Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight,

so that you are proved right when you speak
and justified when you judge.

Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
Surely you desire truth in the inner parts; you teach me wisdom in the inmost place.

What do we do? Confess. Romans 3:23 says, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” God is God, pure, holy, righteous, and judge of our thoughts, words, and deeds. Every single one of us are born in sin and sin all the time when compared to God’s truth and wisdom. Only God can remove sin and clean away the blackness and teach us from the inside out. Hear the affirmations “Cleanse me and I will be clean,” “Wash me and I will be white,” “Let me hear and my bones will rejoice.”

Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity.

Then something really wonderful – a miracle – happens!

Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.

Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will turn back to you.
Save me from bloodguilt, O God, the God who saves me, and my tongue will sing of your righteousness.
O Lord, open my lips, and my mouth will declare your praise.

God is the creator of all things and when you confess, he creates in you a new heart. Jesus told a priest named Nicodemus that a person had to be born again in order to see the Kingdom of God – in order to see God with new spiritual eyes and someday real eyes. Later in the New Testament, the disciples who believed that God sent Jesus save people from their sins received the Holy Spirit because they were born new. This is a new life! A new life that is for you! God’s Holy Spirit then helps you to be willing to live right, in hear truth, and seek after God’s wisdom. This is really Good News that you can share with others!

Be humble and broken. God takes and works on this kind of sorrow to clean, heal, and restore.

You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.

In your good pleasure make Zion prosper; build up the walls of Jerusalem.
Then there will be righteous sacrifices, whole burnt offerings to delight you; then bulls will be offered on your altar.

Finally, here is a prayer for the community of God’s people. Jesus told his disciples that he would leave them but that his work was to prepare a place for them to live. He promised that he would return for them and that those who are his would live with him forever. Jesus guaranteed this could happen and his life was that righteous sacrifice offered to God. God accepted Jesus’ sacrifice and raised Him out of the tomb. When you accept that Jesus’ sacrifice covers all of your sins, when you call Him LORD, you belong to Him – you are in Christ. “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God.” (2 Corinthians 5:17-18)

Psalm 51 shows us the truth. We are sinners and sin against God. Only He can take away the sin when we are sorrowful, confess, and ask for a new life. This is the truth. Don’t let any feelings, emotions, or passions take away this truth. God is a merciful God. Jesus said, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)



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