John Bunyan’s Christian allegory ‘The Pilgrim’s Progress’ tells of a man who lives in the evil City of Destruction. He feels a deep sorrow because he realises that his sin is weighing him down. This sin is represented as an enormous bundle strapped securely to his back. He struggles to get rid of it by himself, but he can’t. It is only when he comes to the foot of the cross that the bundle is cut loose and rolls away. The weight is gone, his sorrow is lifted, and he finds the joy of knowing his sin is forgiven. In Psalm 32 David expresses that same joy.
- How does David describe those who have been forgiven (vs 1 and 2)? What do you understand by this?
- What expressions in verses 1 and 2 are used describe forgiveness of sin?
- How does David describe the time when he failed to confess his sin (vs 3 and 4)?
The word ‘blessed’ is used many times in the Bible. To be blessed means that God has poured out his grace, favour and here, his forgiveness, on us. Happiness can change according to our circumstances or the way we feel. But when we are blessed by God, we can know true joy and peace, even when life is difficult. Do you know the joy of forgiveness, the blessing of having the burden of your sin lifted? See 1 John 1:8-9.
- What did David have to do to receive forgiveness (vs 5)?
- In verse 6, what does David urge all the faithful to do?
- What do you think David means when he says: ‘You are my hiding place’ (v 7)?
Verse 1 describes the blessedness of sins being covered. Verse 5 shows that for our sins to be covered, we must first uncover them before God. We must admit all our wrong doing to him. When David is forgiven, and his guilt is taken away, he expresses the confidence that God will hide and protect him in times of trouble. We too can take refuge in the Lord in times of trouble, for he is good. He cares for those who trust in him. See Nahum 1:7.
- In verses 8 and 9 God is speaking. What does he tell us to do? What does he tell us not to do?
- What wonderful promise are we given if we trust in the LORD (vs 10)?
- How are we to react to this promise (vs 11)?
How good it is to rejoice in the fact that we have been forgiven. Yet, as wonderful as this is, we must never forget that our forgiveness came at a price. Our sin grieved the heart of our heavenly Father, yet in his unfailing love for us, he sent his Son Jesus to die on the cross. May we live in grateful response for all that he has done.
Something to think and pray about
How wonderful it is to be brought back into a right relationship with God. Give thanks for God’s gracious plan to save us. Tell him what being forgiven means to you.