Psalm 51 is a repentant psalm of king David after his sin with Bathsheba. This entire ordeal was one of the biggest failures of  David’s life. Even still, with the full knowledge of what David would do, God said of him that he was a man after His own heart! WOW! What an amazing thing for God to say of someone. It wasn’t because David didn’t sin, it was because of his love for The Lord and how he dealt with his sin.

Have mercy on me, O God, according to Your loving kindness; according to the multitude of Your tender mercies, blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. Against You, You only, have I sinned, and done this evil in Your sight- that You may be found just when You speak, and blameless when You judge.  Psalm 51:1-4

David acknowledges that his sin was before himself and against God. He realized that each level of sin, (transgressions, sin, iniquity) was against God. Not just the really vile acts (iniquity), not just the deliberate rebellious acts(sin), but also the attitudes and thoughts that quenched the Holy Spirit (transgressions). ALL SIN comes against a Holy God! And ALL SIN stands before us, that is between us and God. That’s why we must deal with our sin properly and immediately; to keep our personal relationship with our heavenly Father moving forward.


So how do we do that? How do we deal with sin? Do we just tell God we are sorry? No! It is much deeper than an apology. We are to repent with a broken heart. Repent means to turn the from the direction you are going in and go in the opposite direction. The brokenness comes from

  • The awareness or the remembrance of the fact that our sin put Jesus on the cross,
    “Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God, The God of my salvation.” vs.14a
  • From the fact that sin destroys our hearts and our relationship with the Lord.
    “Against You, You only, have I sinned, and done this evil in Your sight-That You may be found just when You speak and blameless when You judge.” vs.4


Once we are broken over our sin and have the desire to repent the next step is easy, we confess. Look again at VS. 1-3. David uses personal pronouns over and over : my transgressions. . .my iniquity. . .my sin” (emphasis added). We have to own it! We break out the ‘Christian bar of soap’, found in I John 1:9.

“If we confess our sin He is faithful and just to forgive us of our sin and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9

We need to name our sin. Call a lie a lie, call pride, pride, or whatever it may be. Yes, it can be a little embarrassing, but remember He already knows. When we do this, then we can come to God with the desire for reconciliation that He desires and have the joy that comes with salvation and not the guilt that comes with sin.

Take note of Who’s salvation it is. It is His! Only He can save! Only He can forgive sin! And because of His love for each of us personally, He longs to do so.

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me away from Your presence, and do not take Your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of Your salvation and uphold me by You generous Spirit.  Psalm 51:10-12


Your challenge this week is to begin practicing confession of sin the moment it occurs. Just PAUSE and immediately make things right with your Savior. Use Psalm 51 as a prayer guide and watch your relationship with the Lord grow and strengthen. Remember God does NOT remind you of forgiven sin, only the sin that you haven’t dealt with. So if the devil reminds you of forgiven sin, remind him of the blood of Jesus that covers it; and if he reminds you of your past remind him of his future. The devil loses! In Christ, as we pause to confess, we win!

  • In dealing with sin, have you ever thought to look up and memorize verses that deal with that particular sin as well as verses that remind you who you are in Christ? Example: I have a temper problem – Colossians 3:8, Romans 8:37
  • Ok, I do that. Now what do I do with the verses? Pray them back to the Lord. Example: Dear Lord, I want to put away anger from my life. You said I am a super conquerer in You. Help me to conquer anger in my life so I can love and serve you better. In Jesus name, Amen!
  • If love = obedience, does my life show that I love the Lord more than my words?
by Mike Jarvis