Read: Jonah 3:1-10; Psalm 51:3-4, 12-13, 18-19; Luke 11:29-32
Psalm 51 is one of the best examples of the heart GOD desires for us all. This is a picture of how to be crushed with guilt well. During this season of Lent may HOLY SPIRIT make it so in our hearts.
What makes a person a Christian is not that he doesn’t get discouraged, and it’s not that he doesn’t sin and feel miserable about it. What makes a person a Christian is the connection that he has with Jesus Christ that shapes how he thinks and feels about his discouragement and his sin and guilt.
The heading of Psalm 51 goes like this: “To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David, when Nathan the prophet went to him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba.” What happened with Bathsheba is well known:
“It happened, late one afternoon, when David arose from his couch and was walking on the roof of the king’s house, that he saw from the roof a woman bathing; and the woman was very beautiful. And David sent and inquired about the woman. And one said, “Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?” So David sent messengers and took her, and she came to him, and he lay with her. . . . Then she returned to her house. And the woman conceived, and she sent and told David, ‘I am pregnant.’”
He tried to cover his sin by bringing her husband Uriah home from battle so Uriah could lie with her and think it was his baby. Uriah was too noble to go in to his wife while his comrades were in battle. So David arranged to have him killed so that he could quickly marry Bathsheba and cover the sin that way.
Here is what Paul said in Romans 3:25–26: “God put [Christ] forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins [that’s exactly what 2 Samuel 12:13 says God did—he passed over David’s sin]. It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.”
Being a Christian means being broken and contrite. Don’t make the mistake of thinking you get beyond this in this life. It marks the life of God’s happy children till they die. We are broken and contrite all the way home—unless sin gets the proud upper hand. Being broken and contrite is not against joy and praise and witness. It’s the flavor of Christian joy and praise and witness.
“All gracious affections [feelings, emotions] that are a sweet [aroma] to Christ . . . are brokenhearted affections. A truly Christian love, either to God or men, is a humble brokenhearted love. The desires of the saints, however earnest, are humble desires: their hope is a humble hope; and their joy, even when it is unspeakable, and full of glory, is a humble brokenhearted joy. . . .” –Jonathan Edwards
JESUS is Risen . . . !