Explore the Bible
August 13, 2017
The relativism of secular culture has essentially removed the lines between right and wrong. What was once wrong is now right. What was once right is now wrong. In essence, there is no such thing as biblical sin. If you have guilt over something you have done, you’re not a sinner; you’re a victim. You don’t need confession, repentance and forgiveness. You need therapy.
Despite what the secular culture espouses, sin is a real issue that the people of God must take seriously. Christians do not live by the standards of the popular culture but by the Word of God.
David wrote Psalm 32 after the prophet Nathan confronted him about his sin of adultery with Bathsheba and the murder of Uriah. David was brought to the realization of his sin, and he confessed and repented. Psalm 32 records not only the joy David found but also the devastating effects of unconfessed sin in the life of a believer. David was not just telling a story. He wrote this psalm to teach the people of God the importance of confessing their sins to the Lord. In the title of Psalm 32, it is described as a maskil. The word maskil means “to instruct or to teach.”
Psalm 32 is a teaching psalm with many lessons.
First, we see that David experienced the forgiveness of his sins. This forgiveness brought joy to his life. The word “forgiveness” in the Hebrew literally means “a lifting.” The forgiveness of sin lifts the burden of sin from us. Second, David recalled his period of unrepentance, “When I kept silent ...” (Psa. 32:3). This had a devastating effect on him. He lost strength because God’s hand of discipline was heavily upon him (Psa. 32:4). Third, David acknowledged his sin was against God only, and he confessed his sin to God (Psa. 32:5). Fourth, David counseled God’s people on how to acknowledge their sin to God and seek His forgiveness (Psa. 32:6-11).
This psalm ends the way it began, with joy. For David, joy was the byproduct of confession, repentance and forgiveness. It can be ours too.