Saturday, December 17, 2011

One Minute Devotion: Psalm 51:1-3

Psalm 51:1-3

Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy loving kindness; according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me.

I am one of the few people who do not prescribe to a "sinner's prayer" as there is no specific mention of one in the scriptures, but was an idea contrived via church tradition and practice. I firmly believe recognition of sin emanates at the moment the Holy Spirit enters and awakens us from the slumber of iniquity. He quickens the spirit and reveals the unmistakable necessity of God's grace and presence. Once this supernatural event occurs, one is irresitstably drawn to God becoming desperately aware of the need to seek forgiveness of sin and the strength and courage to repent. With that said, this Psalm is the closest thing one could consider as a thoroughly sincere and heartwrenching appeal to God for His forgiveness, mercy, and grace. These verses are in response to the prophet Nathan as King David laments his adulterous affair with Bath-sheba, a sin that also resulted in the eventual death of his close friend and loyal soldier Uriah, who was also her husband. Was this person the one God called, a man after His own heart. We learn three things from this passage. One, historically, David haunted and tormented by these sins brought him to a place of utter contempt and ruin. Two, personally, David realized that only God could forgive him of his transgressions, not because of any good thing within David, but because of the unconditional love and mercy of God. Finally, that forgiveness is extended to all who recognize their transgressions, sin nature, and desire for God's forgiveness, cleansing, and renewing. As a reference, one need only to look at a particularly obscure verse, not mentioned much, John 3:16. In our current culture; the mere mention of sin is politically incorrect, churches forgo conversations about sin and its consequence for fear of empty pews, and rationalization and equivocation replace accountability and truth. Without the salvation message, what is Christianity? What was the need for God to become flesh as Jesus Christ? What was Jesus' purpose if the recognition of sin and its cost is folly? Strip away the need for renewing of mind and spirit through Christ's ultimate sacrifice and we have transformed theology into philosophy. Christianity metamorpjizes into a concept rather than a reality. Does God judge sin? Yes. Does He forgive sin? Yes. Does He provide  escape from sin to share an intimate relationship with Him through Jesus Christ? Absolutely!  It is a matter of faith, which is the precise essence of Christianity. For you, there is only one question left, is God's word just conceptual or reality? God bless.

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