“Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.” (Psalm 51:7,8).
Psalm 51 is the best known of the penitential psalms written by David, a man who had come to know the depths of sin and the depths of God's forgiveness. After his sin with Bathsheba had been brought to light (2 Samuel 12), the shepherd- king of Israel was a broken man physically, spiritually, and emotionally. Although the consequences of a believer’s transgression may not be readily apparent, they will surely come because the Lord is faithful to chasten those whom He loves. “If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?” (Hebrews 12:7). Hard as it may be at the moment, God's discipline is not punitive, but transformational. “For they (our earthly fathers) verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness” (Hebrews 12:10). We see this in David's petition that God would create in him a clean heart and a steadfast spirit (Psalm 51:10). A clean heart is indicative of a new beginning, and a steadfast spirit a new determination. Out of the pit of sin’s despair, the repentant child of God finds comfort and peace in a restored relationship with his Lord and Savior.
Dear Christian brother or sister, have you committed some grievous sin or sins that weigh on you day and night? Is this a burden you can no longer bear? Are you feeling like David did, whose sin was ever before him (Psalm 51:3)? This is a very painful place for a child of God to be. Lost is the joy of one’s salvation, and nothing in life can replace the fellowship with God that was once enjoyed. In my years of pastoral ministry, I have seen this many times among God’s children, and always, I offer the same counsel. Just as with David and with the prodigal son in Luke 15, the way home is the path of repentance. David confessed his sin, and the Lord graciously forgave him all his iniquities. The key to your restoration and favor with God is to acknowledge your sin and need of restored fellowship with God. Seek it without delay. “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:8, 9). When the prodigal son returned home, his father was moved with compassion, embraced him, and kissed him (Luke 15:20). The story goes on to say that a great feast was held that day because the wayward child had come back to the place of blessing and the comfort of his father’s love.
Dear wandering child of God, today can be your day of rejoicing and blessing if you go to Jesus now, confessing all your sin, seeking only Him and a new beginning. He will never cast you out.