Tuesday, January 15, 2019

2019.01.15 Hopewell @Home ▫ Psalm 32

Read Psalm 32
Questions for Littles: What does v1 say about the man whose transgression is forgiven and whose sin is covered? What does v2 say about the man against whom the Lord doesn’t count the guiltiness of sin? In v3, what made it feel like his bones were rotting so that he groaned all day? Whose hand (v4) was making him feel like that? To whom did the sinner acknowledged his sin, stop hiding his guilt, and confess his transgressions (v5)? How did the LORD respond? What do the godly do, in a time when the Lord may be found (v6)? What else does the Lord do for those who seek His forgiveness or pray to Him (v7)? What does the Lord do for believers in v8? What surrounds the person who trusts in the LORD (v10)? How should the righteous respond to Him (v11)? 
This week’s Call to Worship, Prayer for Help, Song of Adoration, and Confession of Sin all came from Psalm 32. This wonderful Psalm is quoted by Paul to prove that we are made right with God only through faith in Romans 4. Notice what the man contributes to his being blessed in vv1-2: transgression, sin, and iniquity. By the sacrifice of Christ, God doesn’t justify the godly; He very specifically justifies the ungodly (cf. Rom 4:5).

Of course, sinning by itself doesn’t cause forgiveness. There are many who sin and are not bothered by it. There are others who sin, and think that they can do something themselves to make up for it.

What is it that leads to the forgiveness in Psalm 32? It’s the acknowledging of our sin and confessing of our transgression to the Lord. Just as the Lord saved from the flood (v6), so also He saves from sin (v5). The missing piece, of course, is Christ Himself, with His death and resurrection. He is our “ark”—the One in whom alone we can be saved, the One in whom alone “the flood of great waters” will not come near us. Confessing our sin to Him (v5) must always be joined by praying to Him (v6), hiding in Him (v7), and listening to Him (v8-9).

All of these things, taken together, are summarized in v10 as “trust in the Lord.” And what is the result? He makes us righteous; He makes us to rejoice! Behold how salvation is completely a gift! And behold how complete a gift it is: forgiveness, safety, peace, guidance, mercy, and joy.

Perhaps the best part of this gift is found in the second line of v10: he who trusts in Yahweh, steadfast love shall surround him. Like an army that allows no escape, so the covenanted love of God in Christ Jesus will allow us no escape. When we trust in Him, our whole life is enclosed with steadfast love!
What sin have you been trying to pretend away? In which ways are you tempted to think of yourself as better than others, or pretty good? Which aspect of trusting in Christ from this Psalm do you think needs the most work for you? What are you going to do about that? 
Suggested songs: ARP32A “What Blessedness” or TPH32B “How Blest Is He Whose Trespass”

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