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.
Confession is agreeing with God about your sin.
Initially, David didn’t realize who Nathan was referring to when he related the tale of a rich man stealing a poor man’s only lamb (2 Samuel 12:1-15). But when David grew enraged about the unfair robbery, Nathan confronted him with the truth; David was the rich man, an elite ruler who took the wife of Uriah, one of his most devoted warriors, and then had him murdered in an attempt to hide his sin (2 Samuel 11).
Rather than denying his actions, David confesses his guilt, agreeing with God about his infidelity with Bathsheba and his responsibility for her husband’s death. Psalm 51 records his plea for the Lord’s mercies, and he acknowledges that these sins are against God himself—reaching beyond the people he hurt. David asks for cleansing and restoration of the joy experienced only in the Lord’s presence.
God receives damaged sinners—anyone who admits their iniquities and accepts his forgiveness. Hiding your sin just magnifies it. Confess everything to the Lord, keeping nothing back.
Inspired by Psalm 51:1-19