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Bible Pathways 07/03/2003

July 3

Read Psalms 46 -- 51

In Today's Reading:

The psalmist's confidence and praise of God; deception of worldly wealth; a prayer for mercy and forgiveness

David disregarded the Word of God when he lusted after the beautiful wife of his neighbor, Uriah the Hittite, one of his most loyal soldiers. While Uriah was at war, David committed adultery with Uriah's wife. Through a planned military maneuver initiated by David, Uriah was killed, allowing David to legally marry Bathsheba.

It appeared to be a happy ending for David and Bathsheba until Nathan, the fearless prophet of God, appeared and denounced the king's selfish and wicked sins. Nathan asked: Why did you despise the Word of God by killing Uriah the Hittite with the sword and then taking his wife to be your wife? (see II Samuel 12:9). David had done a great evil. Both acts were forbidden under the Law. He deserved to die and he knew it (see Leviticus 20:10). He cast himself on the mercy of God as a brokenhearted sinner and he humbly prayed: Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Thy lovingkindness . . . blot out my transgressions. . . . cleanse me from my sin. . . . Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me (Psalm 51:1-2,10). David prayed earnestly that his sins would be forgiven. God is merciful to all repentant sinners. In answer to David's sincere prayers, God forgave him. But the result of his sin was personal shame and suffering for the rest of his life, as well as many tragic personal and national consequences. The Holy Spirit inspired David to record his own cry of sorrow and repentance.

We wish that this blight upon David's life had not happened. But it was recorded, not only to reveal the deception and never ending devastation of lust, but to let all of us know that God forgives our sins when we repent and pray as David did. This holds out hope to the sinner who truly repents that he can experience the mercy and forgiving love of God. It also teaches the inescapable consequences of sin. David's prayer for mercy is a prayer for release from the presence and power of sin. He prayed: Blot out my transgressions. Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin (Psalm 51:1-2). To blot out illustrates the way a debt would be erased or forgiven. Wash me . . . cleanse me illustrates the same way that dirty clothes would be washed.

If we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin (I John 1:7).

Christ Revealed:

As the One Who will judge His people (Psalm 50:4). The Lord Jesus Christ . . . shall judge the quick (living) and the dead at His appearing (II Timothy 4:1).

Word Studies:

46:6 heathen raged = nations were in turmoil; 48:11 daughters of Judah = its cities and villages; 49:9 see corruption = experience death; 50:23 conversation = daily conduct; 51:4 clear = pure, blameless.

Prayer Needs:

BP Staff: Jim Ryan · Pray for Bible Pathway Distributors · Government Official: Sen. Lamar Alexander (TN) · Country: India (1 billion) in southern Asia · Major languages: Hindi and English · Religious freedom, but increasing harassment and persecution of Christians by religious radicals · 78% Hindu; 12% Muslim; 2% Protestant; 2% Roman Catholic; 2% Sikhs · Prayer Suggestion: Ask in the Name of Jesus for His glory, and your request will be granted (John 14:13-14).

Optional Reading: I Thessalonians 2

Memory Verse for the Week: Romans 1:16

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