Have you sinned today?
David repented for an audience of One. In essence, David repented as boldly as he sinned. After the prophet Nathan confronted David regarding his sin with Bathsheba including orchestrating the death of her husband, Uriah the Hittite, David’s first words uttered his concern for his broken fellowship with God, “Then David said to Nathan, ‘I have sinned against the LORD'” (2 Samuel 12:13). When we sin against God, we must repent as boldly as we sin, focusing on our restored fellowship with God. The Old Testament’s word for repent, is return, one of the most frequently used verbs by the writers of the Bible’s first 39 books. When we sin, we turn our hearts away from God. Repentance means that we return our hearts to Him.
When we repent, we are contrite toward God and forgiven by God. In his psalm repenting of his sin with Bathsheba, David communicated his contrition toward a Holy God, “Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you are proved right when you speak and justified when you judge” (Psalm 51:4). Contrite, dakah in Hebrew, means “broken,” or “sore.” In Latin, it literally is translated, “to rub together” which is defined as “worn,” or “bruised.” To be contrite, we exhibit a godly sorrow for our sins, one that leads to repentance (2 Corinthians 7:10). David’s genuine repentance was evidenced in his request for God to give him a pure heart, one with unmixed devotion, “Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me” (Psalm 51:10). He went on to paint a picture of God’s desired sacrifices for sin which featured a contrite heart, “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise” (Psalm 51:17).
David rested in the peace that his repentance flowing from a contrite heart resulted in the fact that he had been forgiven, “Blessed is he whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man whose sin the LORD does not count against him and in whose spirit is no deceit” (Psalm 32:1-2). In other words, there is no pretense in us when we genuinely repent with a contrite heart as we stand forgiven.
David noted that God does not seek a one-for-one punishment of our sins, “He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities” (Psalm 103:10). He continued by describing the peace of mind available to us in the truth that God does not recount our sins against us when we stand forgiven, “As far as the east is from the west, so far as he removed our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:12).
Repent for an audience of One. Repent with a contrite heart and return to God in order to be forgiven. Thank God for the truth that He does not seek a one-for-one punishment for your sins and that standing forgiven means that He will not recount your sins against you.