Sunday, September 24, 2017

A Contrite Spirit

“Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation; and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness.” (Psalm 51:14)

A solemn confession. David knew the heinousness of his sin and expressly named it: bloodguiltiness. While his hands didn’t personally kill Uriah, he arranged his death for very selfish reasons. His confession was honest. He didn’t try to lessen the impact of his sin by calling it by a more palatable name.

How often do we, even in our confession before the Lord, find it difficult to specifically and clearly name our sin? David’s contrite spirit teaches us something vitally important in our own relationship with the Father. While it is human nature — man’s carnal flesh — to lessen the severity of one’s own failures, we must not succomb to the enemy’s temptation to soften the impact of our failures before God. David named his sin specifically. While we may not be involved in manipulating circumstances to cover our sin, it’s important we remember a lie is a lie, not a mistake. Murder is murder, not simply being involved in one’s death. Stealing is stealing, not just accidentally picking something up. Manipulation is manipulation, not just encouraging someone to do something with a hidden motive.

In our prayers of confession and repentance, let’s be ever mindful of the fact that we’re not fooling God by choosing the more gentle ways of expressing our sinfulness. What He’s looking for is a contrite spirit, a heart conscious of the hell-deservingness of sin and the great price paid to purchase our forgiveness. Without such, we cannot expect to find forgiveness.

Once David blatantly named his sin before the Father, he was forgiven. Once the burden of sin is lifed through sincere confession and applied mercy, it will be difficult to hold back the praise of Him who is the God of salvation, mercy and peace. Spurgeon writes of David:

The Psalmist ends with a commendable vow: if God will deliver him he will sing — nay, more, he will ‘sing aloud.’ Who can sing in any other style of such a mercy as this! But note the subject of the song — ‘Thy Righteousness.’ We must sing of the finished work of a precious Savior; and he who knows most of forgiving love will sing the loudest.

Blessed be the Name of the Lord in whom we can rejoice for undeserved mercies through Jesus’ blood!

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(c) 2015 Jan Ross
All Rights Reserved

* Based on C. H. Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening: Daily Devotional for April 7.

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