August 1, 2021

Summer in the Psalms: Psalm 51:1-17


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Summer in the Psalms: Psalm 51:1-17

Message Outline

PSALM 51:1-17 (NIV)

1 Have mercy on me, O God,

   according to your unfailing love;

according to your great compassion

   blot out my transgressions.

2 Wash away all my iniquity

   and cleanse me from my sin.

3 For I know my transgressions,

   and my sin is always before me.

4 Against you, you only, have I sinned

   and done what is evil in your sight;

so you are right in your verdict

   and justified when you judge.

5 Surely I was sinful at birth,

   sinful from the time my mother conceived me.

6 Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb;

   you taught me wisdom in that secret place.

7 Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean;

   wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.

8 Let me hear joy and gladness;

   let the bones you have crushed rejoice.

9 Hide your face from my sins

   and blot out all my iniquity.

10 Create in me a pure heart, O God,

   and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

11 Do not cast me from your presence

   or take your Holy Spirit from me.

12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation

   and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.

13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways,

   so that sinners will turn back to you.

14 Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God,

   you who are God my Savior,

   and my tongue will sing of your righteousness.

15 Open my lips, Lord,

   and my mouth will declare your praise.

16 You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it;

   you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.

17 My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit;

   a broken and contrite heart

   you, God, will not despise.

1. This public confession and repentance correspond to his public sin.

2. God’s mercies are abundant, plentiful, rich, and exceedingly tender.

3. David begs for God’s mercy.

4. David confesses and accepts his guilt.

5. David’s pain is related to his love for God.

6. The inescapable reality of sin and our sinful nature is a

permanent human reality.

7. David affirms the results of God’s forgiveness.

8. The ultimate goal: “A broken spirit, a contrite and humble heart.”

9. Open and honest confession makes God “right in his verdict, and justifies in his judgment.”


1. What happens to humans when we are in denial, not confessing nor taking responsibility for our actions and behaviors? 

2. What impact does it have on our conscience, constantly carrying loads of evil shame, toxic guilt, horrible dirt, or covered sin on us?

3. Is there a connection between unconfessed, unrepented, loads of sin, prideful lifestyle and fear, distrust, anger, addictive behaviors, broken interpersonal relationships, paranoia, deep sadness, and bitterness?