11.30.2008 Psalm 32 - Sins Are Forgiven
30th November 2008
Last week, I was at the grocery store in line – the person in front of me had taken her items – had set a couple – here – a couple here – and a couple here – and had left the rest in the cart – the checkout lady would try to take them – and the lady was acting irritated with the checkout girl. She was well-to-do – but it struck me, she was very grumpy with the cashier. The poor girl looked at me like – what should I do? I was thinking about Thanksgiving – in general – people aren’t thankful, they are generally grumpy. When you come to Thanksgiving – people ask, what do you have to be thankful for? We think that thankfulness comes from having. We have been blessed with abundance – and should be thankful – the most thankful in the world, in many ways. But what I have discovered – there are very many who have a little and are very thankful – and the opposite is true as well.
We are going to look at a Psalm of Praise – Psalm 32 – first, we looked at Psalms of Lament, songs of sorrow – because there are probably the most of those. Next most are Psalms of Praise – if you struggle with a grateful heart – this is what you need to hear.
Lord, You are present with us – where can we go from Your Spirit? Your hand guides are lives wherever we are – You never give up on us – You pursue us that we might be ever-drawn to You. Open our hearts in a unique and miraculous way to be drawn to You.
Psalm 32 – How blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven!
This is after David blew it with Bathsheba. Probably one of the lowest moments of David’s life. Blessed – fortunate – happy – well-situated – one who has much to be grateful for. One who recognizes all that God has done for them. A grateful person is one who understands – who has genuine gratitude – who understands that God has forgiven him or her of sins.
Psalm 32:1 How blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, Whose sin is covered! 2 How blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute iniquity, And in whose spirit there is no deceit!
It begins with understanding that God has forgiven our sins. Genuine gratitude comes from a clear understanding of what we celebrate in the Lord’s Supper. We take the bread and cup to remind us of what Christ has done. Psalms are poetry – like we would write – but not based on rhyme. They are songs that were sung. There is a series of threes.
We were watching a Rob Bell video – about the different numbers in the Bible – even in Genesis, it starts with 7 of these and 7 of those, 3 of these – and it connected with the listeners.
The author gives us a series of threes – 3 words for sin;
32:1 ([A Psalm] of David. A Maskil.) How blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, Whose sin is covered! 2 How blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute iniquity, And in whose spirit there is no deceit!
3 words for sin
Transgression – trespass – like in the Lord’s Prayer. If you are out and see a sign that says No Trespassing – what does it tell you? Welcome? No. If you trespass, you are going where you are not supposed to go. Transgression is crossing God-given limits of human behavior. It is basically doing what God tells us not to do.
Whose SIN is covered.
Sin – the flipside of the coin. Sin is NOT going where you are SUPPOSED to go – ignoring or refusing to do those things that God has told you to do. – Could be a sin of omission or ignorance. NOT doing
Iniquity – brings the two together - taking something that is right and making it something wrong. That we can see in many different ways. It is like people who have used religion for oppression and power.
In this country – sad history – people would use the Bible to promote and defend slavery. They took something right – the Bible – and used it for something wrong. They would use their Christianity to oppress people.
We do this any time we use our spirituality to put down another or lower someone’s value in our sight – based on our accomplishment as a Christian.
This is what the Pharisees did in Jesus’ day. We think of the Pharisees as lousy people – but in reality - If a Pharisee walked into our church today – if you could modernize him – you would think he was a model Christian.
Any sin you commit – in any way you could commit it – is forgiven. He has covered all aspects of sin.