Summary: David’s prayer of confession after his adultery with Bathsheba. The fundamental doctrines of the gospel are contained in Psalm 51 - theology, hamartiology and soteriology.


Psalm 51 is one of the penitential Psalms or Psalms of Confession. There are six others - 6, 32, 38, 102, 130 and 143. David’s prayer reminds us of the publican’s in Luke 18:13 "God be merciful to me a sinner".


The doctrine of God. Theology comes from two Greek words, ‘Theos’ (God) and ‘logos’ (discourse).

(a) God hears prayer. David prayed and God heard him.

Psalm 65:2 "O thou that hearest prayer, unto thee shall all flesh come".

(b) God has pity. "The multitude of thy tender mercies".


The doctrine of sin. This is quite a long word but it has a very simple meaning. It comes from two Greek words, ‘Hamartia’ (sin) and ‘logos’ (discourse).

It is vitally important that you have a clear grasp of what sin really is. A wrong understanding spawns false conversions.

(a) You are sinful by nature. "Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.

(b) You are sinful by practice - "transgressions…sins…iniquities".


The doctrine of salvation. This is another big word with a simple meaning. It comes from the two Greek words ‘soter’ (Saviour) and ‘logos’ (discourse). Notice the two parts of salvation:

(a) Removing – of sin; "blot out", "cleanse", "purge",


(b) Receiving – Christ’s righteousness. "My tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness".

It is no secret what God can do.

What He’s done for others, He’ll do for you.

With arms wide open, He’ll pardon you.

It is no secret what God can do.

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