Verse of the Day Devotion: Psalm 32:1
“A Psalm of David. A Maskil. How blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered!” – Psalm 32:1
This is a psalm of David speaking of how blessed are the people whose sins are forgiven. This word blessed has the idea of happy. Therefore, when we replace the word, we see “happy is he whose transgressions are forgiven.” Happy is the man. Happy is his state of mind. This is the condition of a man when his sins are forgiven.
Now this verse is quoted by Paul in his letter to the Romans. Here we read “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds have been forgiven, and whose sins have been covered. Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will not take into account.” Romans 4:7-8. The apostle is using this verse in a way that is different than how the Jews understood it in David’s day. If a man sinned back then, the law required them to present a sin offering to God. This was a deeply symbolic type of offering where the sacrificial animal was killed and the blood was drained as an offering for sin. However, David makes no mention of a sin offering. “I acknowledged my sin to You, And my iniquity I did not hide; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD”; And You forgave the guilt of my sin.” Psalm 32:5.
Now, Paul says these works, as he calls the sacrifice here, is not a matter of grace, but of the payment of a debt. However, Paul adds the following, “But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness, just as David also speaks of the blessing on the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works.” Romans 4:5-6. David understood this. His relationship with God made it clear that confessing his sins to God was the means by which God forgave sin. Acknowledging our sins to God in humility and a contrite heart, not trying to hide it knowing we can never hide anything from Him, is the sacrifice we are to give.
Unfortunately, we all have sinned. “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, “ Romans 3:23. And we understand that there will be times of temptation we must endure. “No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13. And we also understand there may be times where temptation my overcome us. “My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.” 1 John 2:1-2.
Therefore, always remember that we live in a fallen world, and unfortunately we may fall into sin. David did with Bathsheba which is what David is dealing with in Psalm 32. And so did Paul which he admitted in his letter to the Romans: “For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want.” Romans 7:19. However, as David said, instead of trying to hide it, we need to confess it to God, repenting of it and then resting in God’s peace and goodness. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9. And because of this as our focus verse says, “How blessed (happy) is he whose transgression is forgiven, Whose sin is covered!” Psalm 32:1.
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries.