Read: Psalm 51:1-3
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. For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me.
Over the years I’ve encountered a few people who challenge me on the angry God of the Old Testament compared to the kind words of Jesus in the New Testament, but is that really true?
Consider the words of one who could have received the harshest treatment under the law of Moses – King David. David broke nearly all of the ten commandments when he coveted another man’s wife, committed adultery with her, attempted to cover up his actions and eventually ordered the murder of the woman’s husband. Do you think he was honoring his parents with his actions? God?
Yet he wrote about the compassionate forgiveness found through a gracious and merciful God.
For you, O Lord, are good and forgiving, abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you” (Psalm 86:5).
David knew what it meant to be restored in his relationship with God. When David was confronted by the prophet Nathan, he did not harden his heart. He chose to call upon God and repent of his sin.
David ends the Psalm with the following familiar (to most of us) words –
“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” (Psalm 51:10-12).
Is there a time when you prayed those verses in repentance?