When we say “I’m sorry” we are admitting to ourselves, and to others, that we have erred. Whether on purpose, or accidentally; we messed up. We wish we could take it back; but we can’t. All we can do is come and speak that dreaded phrase, “I’m sorry”, and hope that undeserved forgiveness is granted to us.
The Bible goes into great detail about the need for sorrow when we sin against the Lord and others around us. Let’s see what the Bible teaches us about sorrow, and especially sorrow for our sins against God.
To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David, when Nathan the prophet came unto him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba. Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions… Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offering: then shall they offer bullocks upon thine altar.
Throughout the Bible, our sin, and the need for sorrow before God cannot be overemphasized… the picture of a sorrowful heart is found in Psalm 51:. Here, the many aspects of sorrow are described by King David, who after having an illicit relationship with Bathsheba, comes to a realization of his Lord’s view of his sin.
Here are basic principles about sin, sorrow and forgiveness we can find in this Psalm….
Principles About Sin
Our sin is revealed to us by the Lord – Nathan the prophet had come in unto David and revealed David’s sin to him. –
Heading – To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David, when Nathan the prophet came unto him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba.
Vs 6 – and in the hidden [part] thou shalt make me to know wisdom.
Sin causes a hindered relation with God.
Vs 10 – and renew a right spirit within me.
Vs 11 – Cast me not away from thy presence
Sin causes spiritual weakness and loss of communication between God and man
Vs 11 – and take not thy holy spirit from me.
Sin brings guilt upon the offender and the deserving of punishment, both temporal and eternal.
Vs 14 – Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation:
Principles About Sorrow
True sorrow results in a change in our desires. Our heart now has desries to to be free from the sin that was committed and a desire to follow the Lord. This change in our desires is called “repentance”
Vs 2 – Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.
True sorrow results in a willingness to admit the sin and accepting the blame. True sorrow doesn’t seek to justify or excuse its actions, but readily accepts responsibility and acknowledges that wrongs have been done.
Vs 3 – For I acknowledge my transgressions:
Vs 4 – that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, [and] be clear when thou judgest.
Vs 5 – Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.
True sorrow causes the sin to be a plague, never allowing rest until the sin is dealt with. It is likened to the breaking of bones, hindering every aspect of one’s life. –
Vs 3 – and my sin [is] ever before me.
Vs 8 – [that] the bones [which] thou hast broken may rejoice.
True sorrow for sin recognizes that not only man, but Almighty, Holy God has been offended
Vs 4 – Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done [this] evil in thy sight:
Vs 6 – Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts:
True sorrow works shame in the heart.
Vs 9 – Hide thy face from my sins,
True sorrow results in a recognition of the filth of sin and the need for cleansing
Vs 10 – Create in me a clean heart, O God;
Godly sorrow is an absolute necessity for forgiveness
Vs 17 – The sacrifices of God [are] a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.
True sorrow is concerned with sins affects on others
Vs 18 – Do good in thy good pleasure unto Zion: build thou the walls of Jerusalem.
Vs 19 – Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offering: then shall they offer bullocks upon thine altar.
Principles About Forgiveness
Forgiveness is an act of mercy.
Vs 1 – Have mercy upon me, O God,
Forgiveness is an act of love.
Vs 1 – according to thy lovingkindness:
God’s love, mercy and forgiveness is unlimited. There is no sin so great God cannot forgive. There is no sin that God cannot cleanse.
Vs 1 – according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions.
Vs 7 – Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Vs 9 – and blot out all mine iniquities.
Knowledge of being forgiven by God restores joy, and gladness to the heart that has been broken, knowing the sin has been released.
Vs 8 – Make me to hear joy and gladness;
Vs 12 – Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation;
Divine forgiveness is accompanied by a restoration of fellowship and the enabling of the Holy Spirit to begin service to the Lord again.
Vs 12 – and uphold me [with thy] free spirit.
Vs 13 – [Then] will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.
Vs 14 – [and] my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness.
Vs 15 – O Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall shew forth thy praise.
Divine forgiveness is not based upon any good works of “retribution”. True forgiveness is granted based upon God’s gracious intervention in our lives.
Vs 16 – For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give [it]: thou delightest not in burnt offering.
For those who are saved …
When we recognize the wickedness of our sin and the completeness of the Lord’s forgiveness, our hearts should be melted and our appreciation overflowing. Should we not serve Him with all our hearts and lives when we consider all He has done for us?
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, [which is] your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
For those who have yet to be saved…
As fallen mankind, our greatest need is to recognize the heinousness of our sin and the grief we have brought upon our Lord and Savior. This knowledge, through God’s intervention, should lead us to godly repentance. Godly repentance is a combination of: a sincere, heartfelt sorrow for our sin; a desire to forsake that sin; a turning to Christ in helplessness, seeking His salvation; and a submission to the desires of Christ for our life.
If you desire more information about salvation be sure to visit my web page entitled “How To Have A Relationship With God”. Also, please feel free to email me with any questions or comments you may have. Also I would encourage you to seek out a Bible believing church and talk to the pastor/counselor in that church for more information about sin, sorrow, and forgiveness.
To see this lesson taught on video please go to my Video Blog at http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven
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May the Lord bless your study of His Word. Like God’s Word… may your soul’s salvation and your life’s faithfulness be “Settled in Heaven.”