“Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love—According to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin!
For I know my transgression and my sin is ever before me. Against you-You only-have I sinned and done what is evil in Your sight so that you may be justified in Your words and blameless in your judgment.” Ps 51:1-4
Is this statement by the Psalmist a cry for help? A cry for release? A cry of desperation? Or could it be a sober reminder of the reality of his state before God? Is this the beginning of the Gospel for folks like you and me?
When I sit down to a meal I look the plate over and invariably I take a bite out what immediately looks good. As I have grown older my tendency is to eat things I like, not necessarily what is good for me. I do eat what is good for me but often the thought comes through “How much better this would be with bacon.”
I point this out because most of us, many of us, all of us, are drawn to good stuff, appealing stuff. We don’t necessarily like to think about what came before the good stuff. Many do this with the Gospel even today…
The song goes “Thank you for saving me: What can I say?” Saving from what? And why?
I want a deeper walk with God; I want to understand what can be revealed. By thinking and studying hard about the Gospel, from the very beginning or conception and going through as many steps of the Gospel I can think of, the richness of God’s mercy toward Man deepens and broadens; it soars to the heights and fills the deepest valleys.
Ps 51 can be thought of as a part of the beginning of the Gospel. The Psalmist makes a difference on God’s abundant mercy and the spoken realization that he doesn’t deserve it. “Against You I have sinned, done evil so that You are justified and blameless in anything You do.”
This is the basis on why we can give praise to God: He did something that we do not deserve. We don’t deserve it now-we will never deserve it. The Redemption that we mercifully enjoy is all of the Triune God-nothing we have done, nothing we do, nothing we will do will change that the Triune God planned and executed the Gospel from before time began.
The Gospel is a mystery. An amazing and wonderful mystery-but a mystery just the same. Why would He do this? His testimony says for Love. He loves the unlovable traitors to the Creator of the Universe.
How absolutely cool is that?
Father: I don’t ever want to take the Gospel for granted. I don’t want to massage it into just talking about the neat things, the bright things, and the good things. I need to remember just what the Psalmist wrote. “Against You and You alone have I sinned”, and yet, with my despicable sin before me-You redeemed me; You saved me from experiencing Your righteous Wrath, and so much more. When I preach the Gospel to myself, let me remember from here…and praise You forevermore of Your Unfathomable Grace. AMEN.