King David was the 2nd king of Israel, chosen directly by God. He was selected to lead God’s people because he was a man after God’s own heart. David was constantly seeking God, praising God, trusting in God, confessing to God – which is clearly evident in the Psalms that he wrote.
But did you know that King David was also a repentant sinner? Did you know that even the closest person to God can falter in a moment of weakness, creating life-altering consequences?
Many of you know the story…
King David usually went to battle with his men, but on this particular occasion, he remained at his palace. As he was walking upon his rooftop one evening, he spots a beauty bathing in the court of her home. Immediately King David is captivated and inquires as to who she is. She is Bathsheba, the wife of one of his warriors, Uriah. Despite knowing who she is, David summons her to his palace and he lays with her, impregnating her. Once he learns of the pregnancy, in an attempt to cover up his indiscretion, David commands her husband to return home from fighting and tries to trick him into sleeping with Bathsheba. Uriah refuses because he is faithful to his fellow warriors who are still out at battle – how can he go home and enjoy his wife while his brothers are at war? David is now desperate to cover up what he had done and rather than admitting his sin, he instructs his commander to place Uriah on the front line of battle so that he will surely be killed. And he was. (You can read the full account in 2 Samuel 11.)
After her time of mourning, David takes Bathsheba as his wife and the child is born. David knows, through Nathan the prophet, that due to his sin the child will die in his infancy. And he does. (2 Samuel 12)
Adultery. Deceit. Manipulation. Murder. Consequence.
David was wrought with guilt, regret, sorrow – and yet he was repentant and filled with hope.
It is thought that David wrote Psalm 51 after the prophet Nathan confronted David about his sin. What we learn in this prayer is that despite his situation, David continues to seek God, praise Him, confess his iniquity and live in the hope of his future, salvation and love from God.
Take a look:
Confession and Repentance
1 Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.
3 For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me.
4 Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight; so you are right in your verdict and justified when you judge.
5 Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
6 Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb; you taught me wisdom in that secret place.
Request for Forgiveness
7 Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
8 Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice.
9 Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity.
10 Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.
13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways, so that sinners will turn back to you.
14 Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God, you who are God my Savior, and my tongue will sing of your righteousness.
15 Open my lips, Lord, and my mouth will declare your praise.
16 You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.
17 My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise.
18 May it please you to prosper Zion, to build up the walls of Jerusalem.
19 Then you will delight in the sacrifices of the righteous, in burnt offerings offered whole; then bulls will be offered on your altar.
Shouldn’t this be our prayer, too? When we sin, when we turn from God’s truth and law, shouldn’t we have the same heart?
Wash away my iniquity, I have sinned against You, cleanse me, blot out my iniquity, create in me a pure heart, do not cast me from Your presence, restore me, deliver me. I will teach Your ways, I will declare Your praise.
Is this your prayer? Can it be? Should it be?
What I’ve learned:
- Anytime I sin, I need to turn my face to God, confess and repent.
- He is faithful to forgive my repentant heart.
- It is not the sacrifice that God is most concerned with – He is concerned with the condition of my heart. Am I truly repentant or am I just going through the motions?
- I will praise the Lord for His goodness, His mercy, His lovingkindness, His forgiveness and His restoration.
- Is this your prayer? Why or why not?
- What transgressions do you hide from God, keeping you from a full restoration to the person you were designed to be and keeping you from an abundant relationship with your Creator?
- What is your heart condition? Are you truly repentant or are you just going through the motions?
- Do you need to ask God to break your heart for the things that break His in order to bring you to a place where you can be healed and made whole?
I pray that you will spend time with the Lord today and ask that He reveal the areas of your life that need His forgiveness, healing and restoration. I pray that you will have a rejoicing heart that overflows and you have to shout it from the rooftops.
If you need specific prayer, please contact me privately. I would love to pray for you.