When I was in South Africa, a fine, handsome Dutchman came into my service, and God laid His
hand on him and convicted him of sin. The next morning he went to the beautiful home of another
Dutchman and said to him, “Do you recognize that old watch?” “Why, yes,” … More
The sin question needs to be dealt with on spiritual and not ceremonial terms. With his sin confessed and forgiven, David is ready to live a changed life for his Lord. His first responsibility is to teach transgressors the ways of God so as to prevent their making the same mistakes (v. 13). It is a great help when counseling others if we can say, “I know what you’re going through, I have been there myself.”
David’s lips, by his own stubbornness, had been sealed for a year as he refused to admit he had done anything wrong. He was a king and thought he could do as he pleased. David had committed adultery and murder and the Mosaic law allows no reconciliation for these sins. No lamb, no ox, no sin offering, no trespass offering or no burnt offering could take care of this sin. God does not want a show of ceremony when we sin. Rather He delights in a broken heart and a personal confession of sin (v. 17). “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy” (Proverbs 28:13).
David knew that he must get right with God if Israel was to be blessed. As he continued to keep his mouth shut his wickedness pressed down upon him and he knew that if he spoke about the things of God people would call him a hypocrite. With this in mind he concludes his personal prayer of repentance with a prayer for God’s blessing on his nation (vv. 18-19).
One of the best ways for me to understand repentance is by reading the prayers of those who did repent in Scripture. One such prayer is Psalm 51.
Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, O God of my salvation, and my tongue will sing aloud of your righteousness. O Lord, open my lips, and my mouth will declare your praise. For you will not delight in sacrifice, or I would give it; you will not be pleased with a burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise. Do good to Zion in your good pleasure; build up the walls of Jerusalem; then will you delight in right sacrifices, in burnt offerings and whole burnt offerings; then bulls will be offered on your altar.
View this passage in NIV (Bible Gateway) »
Psalms 48:1-8Jerusalem is Greatly to be Praised
Psalms 48:9-14The People Are Invited to Rejoice in God
Psalms 49:1-15Observation of The Prosperity of The Wicked
Psalms 49:16-20The Hope of The Righteous is Eternal
Psalms 50:1-6The Lord Came to Judge
Psalms 50:7-15The Lord’s Indictment Against Formalism
Psalms 50:16-23The Lord’s Indictment Against Hypocrisy
Psalms 51:1-9An Appeal to God’s Love And Compassion
Psalms 51:10-13David Petitioned God For Inward Renewal
Psalms 51:14-19A Prayer For General Prosperity
Psalms 52:1-4The Destruction of a Man of Treachery
Psalms 52:5-7Destroying Others to Make Yourself Look Good
Psalms 52:8-9The Destiny of The Man of Faith
Psalms 53:1-6God’s View of The Human Race
Psalms 54:1-7The Confident Prayer For Deliverance