Create in Me a Pure Heart
“Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love, according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions.” (Psalm 51:1 NIV)
How [David] ever lived with himself for months and months [after having committed adultery with Bathsheba and having arranged for the murder of her husband] is hard to understand. The man who had written such wonderful psalms went for most of a year with a wall between himself and God. Then God sent a prophet to confront him.
Only then did David admit his guilt. Finally we hear him come clean in Psalm 51: “Have mercy on me, O God… Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin” (vv. 1-2). From the depths of his soul David repents and asks pardon from the merciful God he has offended.
Then, in the middle of the psalm, David spells out three absolutely essential things that he desperately needs from God. He has learned something from his terrible fall. What he desires is impossible for him; the Lord must do it. And the work must be done inside him.
When you hear David’s words, you will be aware of how seldom, if ever, you hear anyone pray like this in today’s churches. Unfortunately, we are not asking God for things along these lines. This isn’t the way we usually talk. But these three requests of David lie at the foundation of every victorious Christian life.
1. “Create in me a pure heart.”
David asks God to “create in me a pure heart” (v. 10). David is asking for more than having his sin-stained heart washed. He has already asked for cleansing (vv. 2,7). Now he is going deeper...
To be continued…
-Pastor Cymbala (excerpted from Fresh Faith)
Read Psalm 51:1-6.