Summary: An exposition of Psalm 32
Islington Baptist Church July 24, 2005
The joy of forgiveness
As people we spend of lot of time and money pursuing pleasure and joy.
What sorts of things bring joy? WAIT FOR RESPONSES
What is the typical “shelf life” of the joys that we seek? Relate to grocery shopping and expiry dates.
The Bible tells us how to be blessed.
In Psalm 32, which is our text for today, we are told of one of the greatest joys there is: The joy of the forgiveness of sins!
There is really nothing that beats the forgiveness of sins. There is nothing as wonderful as being right with God and at peace with Him.
In case you didn’t know, the forgiveness of sins is our greatest need. The Bible says that every person has broken God’s laws and standards. Romans 3:23 says “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” Every single person falls short of God’s expectations. Every single person is guilty of rebellion against God. Every single person, apart from a relationship with Jesus, has a wayward self seeking heart.
The consequence of our sinfulness is severe. Broken relationships here on earth. Separation from God. Self inflicted sorrows. Death. Impending punishment. The anger of God directed towards them.
We truly are very needy. Forgiveness of sins is our greatest need.
Turn with me now to Psalm 32 and let’s learn some more. (READ TEXT)
1. Nothing “tops” the joy of the forgiveness of sins. v.1-2
a. Note the two fold declaration of how wonderful it is to be forgiven of our sins.
READ verses. If something is said once in the Bible its important. If twice, then you really need to take note. Repetition in the Bible reinforces a message and draws special attention.
1. Note how David, who is the writer of this Psalm, speaks of our sin in 3 fold manner and also of forgiveness in a 3 fold way.
-David rightfully understood that sin is a serious thing. He knew that “sin” was more than just about “slipping up” or “doing something questionable in the sight of God”
a. David calls sin: Transgressions
This particular term has the following connotations: revolt, rebellion, rejection of God’s authority, rebellion against God’s law.
The result is a gulf is created between God and man. The result is personal defilement and enslavement to sin. Punishment is the rightful end of rebellion.
b. David calls sin: sin
The term used here in v.1 is the principle word for sin in the Old Testament. In mind when this term is used is our failure to live up to God’s standards. In mind is the breach of God’s law.
In mind is the concept of “missing the mark or way”.
In Judges 20:15-16 it says “At once the Benjamites mobilized twenty-six thousand swordsmen from their towns, in addition to seven hundred chosen men from those living in Gibeah. 16 Among all these soldiers there were seven hundred chosen men who were left-handed, each of whom could sling a stone at a hair and not miss.”
When you and I sin, unlike the Benjamites who didn’t miss when they fired their stones, we are said to be missing the mark..
c. David calls sin: iniquity v.2 (NKJV)
This terms denotes crooked behavior. The term is also collective noun which means that it denotes the sum of ones past misdeeds against God and man. The point: You and I not just guilty of sinning once or on occasion against God and man: We’ve got quite a track record.
The result of iniquity: guilt and punishment.
2. Along side of David’s 3 fold description of sin is a 3 fold description of what it means to be forgiven.
a. Forgiven v.1
One of the attributes that the Bible lists of God is that he is a forgiver: In Exodus 34:6-7 it says "The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, 7 maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished
The idea behind the term of v.1 is sins pardoned and taken away. This is what forgiveness is all about.
b. Ones sins are covered v.1
As you well, the opposite of something being covered is exposed. When a person goes to God and truly repents of their sins and seeks the forgiveness of God, there sins are covered over with the result that when God looks upon that person he know longer sees a vile sinner but a forgiven child who belongs to Him.
c. Sins not counted against us v.2
Paul quotes this verse in Romans 4:4-8 as he takes about imputed righteousness.