“For your name’s sake, O Lord, pardon my iniquity, for it is great.” Psalm 25:11 NASB
Have you ever felt like your sin was so huge and hideous that God could not easily forget it? King David did. He’s one of my favorite personalities in the Bible. So full of fervor and triumph and failures and foibles. Just like me. In Psalm 25, he praises God and asks for His forgiveness in the same breath. David says that his sin is “great” and feels the guilt and remorse of his actions. Yet, in the very next chapter, David prays, “Vindicate me, O Lord, for I have led a blameless life; I have trusted in the Lord without wavering.” He asks God to test him and says, “I walk continually in your truth.” and “I wash my hands in innocence.”
Has David forgotten his “great” sin? No. David is not claiming perfection, but rather that he has sincerity of purpose and single-hearted devotion. He had a good understanding of God’s nature and the grace and forgiveness he affords His children. Because of that forgiveness, we can go boldly and confidently before the Lord (no matter what we’ve done), just as David did – who was an adulterer and murderer by the way.
In the book Why Do Mullets Jump?: And Other Puzzles and Possibilities of God’s Creation, Gene Zimmerman describes this attribute of God. “…most of us are poorly equipped for perfection. We come closer to understanding ourselves when we can see and accept some of our human limitations. This isn’t an invitation to pass off every failure by claiming imperfection or to avoid trying; but rather it is advice that we need to accept some imperfection and acknowledge that we can’t do it all right all the time. The encouraging thing about this reality is that God loves us and meets us at these places of imperfection with grace and strength.”
There is a difference between accepting that we will sin and choosing to pitch our tent in the middle of sin and live there. “What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? Far from it! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?” Romans 6:1-2 NASB The good news? Grace doesn’t just cover our past mistakes. It also keeps us from stepping into new ones, if we let it.
The good news? Grace doesn’t just cover our past mistakes. It also keeps us from stepping into new ones, if we let it.
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