A Clean Start
Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. ~Psalm 51:10
Someone who has had trouble with the law understands the seriousness of his offense. The record of his offense can be used against the offender over and over again. However, there is a wonderful feeling when the offender finds mercy in the eyes of the law, has his record cleared, and is able to have a clean start. As we start a New Year, we must not overlook the importance of a clean start.
We see the setback.
Psalm 51 is David’s prayer of confession. David used several words to describe his sins: sin, transgression, iniquity, and evil. As a result of sin that he did not previously deal with, he had broken fellowship with God. Broken fellowship leaves us in a terrible state of affairs. David was unclean, powerless, restless, joyless, and under the chastening hand of God. Unconfessed sin always leads to setback. Sin in our life blocks the prayer channel between us and God (Psalm 66:18). Sin hinders spiritual growth and progress, and affects those closest to us. Are there setbacks in your life that can be traced to unconfessed sin?
We see the supplication.
“Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.” David makes a genuine contrite prayer to God for mercy, forgiveness, and cleansing. The weight of his sins was crushing him. He begged for God to blot out his sins and to hide his face from his iniquities. David knew he was guilty and worthy of punishment. He threw himself to God for mercy. When we study this prayer, it teaches us not to ever take lightly the sins we commit.
We see the sterilizing.
“Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.” David asked for a clean heart. I am thankful that the blood of Jesus Christ keeps cleansing us from our sin. I am thankful that 1 John 1:9 says that God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. All unrighteousness means just that-all! A clean heart brings us back into fellowship, restores our joy, and enables us to have power again for service. David also asked for a right spirit within him. First, he needed a right spirit towards God and the cleansing God gave him. He knew confession also implied forsaking his sins. Second, he needed a right spirit towards others. God’s cleansing of our sin is incomplete if we are not right with those we hurt and offended along the way. Third, he needed a right spirit towards himself and not to be living with an evil conscience.
We see the satisfaction.
“Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.” What a wonderful feeling it is to be clean! David had his joy and confidence in the Lord restored. He felt a restored liberty and responsibility in being a strong witness of his faith and turning sinners to God. He got right with God about the importance of consistent and consecrated testimony before the unsaved. David could praise the Lord, worship Him, and offer sacrifices that were pleasing because he got a clean start.
As you start this New Year, make sure you do so with a clean start. Whenever the Jews celebrated the Feast of Unleavened Bread, they had to first clean their houses thoroughly of any leaven. A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump. Get a clean start this with God this morning!
Have a cleansed God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Genesis 12-15