Saturday, April 17, 2010

BOLD Outreach Reflections from Psalm 5

The Promise of Mercy – How Sweet is That?

How often have you prayed to God and asked Him to hear you, to really hear? In the opening verses of Psalm 5, David asked God to consider his innermost thoughts. That’s a dangerous thought! Would I really want God to examine every last thought I have had today? Including those thoughts of frustration and contempt when I didn’t get my way? Hmmm, my innermost thoughts aren’t always so good. I would prefer to keep them hidden.

To invite God to consider my innermost thoughts is to place myself at His mercy. This is risky considering how much God detests disobedience and wickedness. He certainly knows that I have not been obedient or free from lustful and selfish thoughts. I am certainly not worthy to stand in His presence. He is holy and I am not!

David recognized this paradox, but he trusted in the mercy of God. He states, “I will enter your house because of your great mercy” (Psalm 5:7, God’s Word). David was able to stand in the presence of God without fear because he knew that the Lord’s mercy and forgiveness were poured out on all those who looked to the Lord for help. David recognized that God hates sin and those who despise the Lord’s name and commandments. He also recognized that God’s desire is for His people to place their trust in His provision and mercy.

David provides us with this outreach promise in Psalm 5,
"All who take refuge in [the Lord will] rejoice. [They will] sing with joy forever. Protect them, and
let those who love your name triumph in you. You bless righteous people, O LORD. Like a large shield, you surround them with your favor" (Psalm 5:11-12, God’s Word, Copyright 1995 by God’s Word to the Nations Bible Society, http://www.godsword.org/).

How do unrighteous, sinful people become righteous in the eyes of God? By trusting in the forgiveness purchased for them through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Jesus, the promised Messiah, the Son of God, took the punishment for our sins upon Himself.

David trusted in the promise that his sins would be forgiven. We can trust in the promise that they have been forgiven. In Christ, God has accomplished this for David and for us. With David, we can confess our sins and throw ourselves on the mercy of God knowing that the blood of Jesus Christ has cleansed us from all of our sins.

We can share Jesus with confidence and certainty, knowing that those who call out to God for mercy will receive forgiveness of sins, and will be placed under the protection of God forever.