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Authentic Prayer: Confession

Psalm 51:2

Wash me thoroughly from my guilt,
and cleanse me from my sin.
I admit that I am rebellious.
My sin is always in front of me.
I have sinned against you, especially you.
I have done what you consider evil.
So you hand down justice when you speak,
and you are blameless when you judge.
Psalm 51:2-4

Confession means agreeing with God about sin.

At first David didn’t know what the prophet Nathan was talking about when he told the story of a rich man who stole a poor man’s only lamb (2 Samuel 12:1-15). When David flew into a rage at the unjust theft, the prophet revealed that David was that rich man, a privileged king who stole the wife of one his most loyal soldiers and committed murder to cover it up (2 Samuel 11).

David could have denied his wrongdoing, but he immediately admits his guilt, agreeing with God about his affair with Bathsheba and his murder of Uriah. His words pour out in Psalm 51. He pleads for undeserved mercy. He sees that his sin reaches past people to impact God himself. He asks the Lord to cleanse and remake him, giving him back the joy that comes from being in his presence.

God welcomes broken sinners—anyone who owns up to their failings and receives his forgiveness. Covering up your sin just compounds it. Admit everything to the Lord, holding nothing back.

Inspired by Psalm 51:1-19

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