Above all else make people comfortable. That seems to be the missions statement of some churches. Discussing sin makes people uncomfortable, so let’s not spend a lot of time there. This scares me, because if we don’t talk about sin then it lessens the urgency of repentance.
Today I want to examine parts of Psalm 51 which is for me one of the most powerful ones. David writes this after being confronted for his sin. God sent Nathan the prophet to call David out on his adultery and his murder. (That story can be found in 2 Samuel 11 & 12)
Psalm 51:1-4 (NLT) Have mercy on me, O God, because of your unfailing love. Because of your great compassion, blot out the stain of my sins. Wash me clean from my guilt. Purify me from my sin. For I recognize my rebellion; it haunts me day and night. Against you, and you alone, have I sinned; I have done what is evil in your sight. You will be proved right in what you say, and your judgment against me is just.
We all sin, but many times when confronted we throw up our arms in offense as if we are a picture of innocence. David doesn’t do that. He immediately confesses his guilt. I think David knew the character of God. He knew that God was full of unfailing love and because of that willing to offer mercy. David knew that wrong doing, is ultimately against God and therefore it is His forgiveness we must seek.
I love that it says “Your judgement against me is just.” David accepted the consequences of his actions and our sin does often have consequences here and now, but what I love is that God is just! One of my favorite scriptures is 1 John 1:9 which says in the New King James “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Not only is God faithful to forgive us, but God is JUST to forgive us also. He is right in His decision to forgive us. Praise God that we are pardoned from the eternal consequences of our sin.
Psalm 51:10-12 (NLT ) Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me. Do not banish me from your presence, and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you.
“Create in my a clean heart” is becoming one of my personal daily prayers. The heart is naturally deceitful and wicked! (Jeremiah 17:9) I know what my heart will choose left to its own devices so I choose not to ignore my natural inclination for sin and instead pray, God make my heart clean.
As Christians the thing we should ache for the most is the presence of God! In the moments when I have found myself caught in sin, I am grieved most of all because it is sin that separates me from God’s power and presence. We must humble ourselves and come broken before God then He can restore the joy of our salvation. It is HIS PRESENCE that makes us willing to obey Him! A Christian who never gets into the presence of God is a Christian who is less likely to be concerned about their sin.
His presence will convict us and His presence will purge us of our wicked desires, that is why we should constantly set aside the busyness of our schedule and get into His presence in prayer and worshipping our God!
Psalm 51:16-17 (NLT) You do not desire a sacrifice, or I would offer one. You do not want a burnt offering. The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit. You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.
God will never reject us when we come broken before Him ready to turn from our sinful nature and repent fully before His throne. No matter how long I have been a Christian, I will always confess when I have wandered down the wayward path of sin. I will come before the Lord and ask Him to make me clean again.
We never outgrow our need for repentance and Praise God He is always faithful and just to forgive us.