READING: Psalms 51-57
Psalm 51 is one of David’s most famous psalms. He wrote it after the prophet Nathan had confronted him about his sin with Bathsheba. In his confession and plea for forgiveness, David hints at what sin does to us:
- It makes us guilty: “Have mercy on me, O God” (Psalm 51:1)
- It makes us feel dirty: “Wash away all my iniquity; and cleanse me from my sin” (Psalm 51:2)
- It continually confronts us: “My sin is always before me” (Psalm 51:3)
- It robs us of our joy: “Let me hear joy and gladness” (Psalm 51:8)
- It taints our heart: “Create in me a pure heart, O God” (Psalm 51:10)
- It causes us to fear God’s judgment: “Do not cast me away from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me” (Psalm 51:11)
What is most striking to me is the result of sin vs. the fun of sin. For what was surely a brief amount of “sinful fun” with Bathsheba, David paid a heavy price, including the death of his son. Sin does that to us: it leads us to focus on the temporary and ignore the long-term repercussions of our choices. Today’s fun is what matters most to us — not tomorrow’s penalty.
Sin, though, just isn’t worth it. The cost is too high.
- Think about times in your life when your deliberate sinful choices cost you much. Thank God for His forgiveness.
- Use Psalm 51 to have an extended time of confession today.
PRAYER: “God, I praise You for Your confrontation and forgiveness of sin.”
TOMORROW’S READING: Psalms 58-65