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Against You, You only, have I sinned and done what is evil in Your sight, so that You may be justified in Your words and blameless in Your judgment. (Psalm 51:4)
The greatest evil of sin is that it is against God.
Sin is the most significant and terrible issue in the world. It is the root cause of all kinds of heartache and misery. Sin is not merely a violation of a moral code but a direct affront to God. It is an offense against His character and nature.
The great evil of sin lies in the fact that it is against God. David acknowledges this in Psalm 51:4 when he says, “Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight.” Sin is rebellion against the sovereign and holy God who created the universe. Sin separates us from God and disrupts the intimate relationship that we were meant to have with Him. Romans 3:23 tells us that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” The very essence of sin is falling short of the glory and perfection of God.
Sin is often seen as a mere moral or ethical issue, but in reality, it is a deeply theological problem. The psalmist David recognizes this truth in Psalm 51 as he cries out to God for forgiveness and cleansing after committing adultery with Bathsheba and murdering her husband Uriah. Through David’s confession, we can learn about the great heinous evil of sin and its devastating impact on our relationship with God.
The consequences of sin are severe. Sin separates us from God and brings death and destruction into our lives. As we read in Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Sin has a high cost, and we will all pay that price unless we turn from sin and come to Christ.
Never was a sinner pardoned while impenitent.
Another truth we see in Psalm 51 is that never was a sinner pardoned without repentance. David models true repentance as he confesses his sin and pleads for mercy from God. He acknowledges that he has sinned against God and that God is just in his judgment of sin. In verse 17, he says, “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.” It is only when we acknowledge our sinfulness and turn from our sin that we can receive God’s forgiveness, mercy, and grace.
The Bible teaches us that forgiveness of sins is conditional upon repentance. As we read in Acts 3:19, “Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out.” This verse reminds us that we must acknowledge our sin and turn away from it if we want to receive forgiveness. If we refuse to repent, we cannot be forgiven.
Never was a sinner truly penitent, while insensible of the great evil of sin.
We cannot truly repent of sin unless we understand it’s great evil. Sin is not a minor offense that we can simply overlook or excuse. It is a serious offense against God that has severe consequences. As we read in Psalm 51:3, “For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.” True repentance requires a deep understanding of the gravity of our sin.
Sin is not just a mistake or a slip-up; it is a deeply ingrained issue that affects every aspect of our being. David understands this in Psalm 51:5 when he says, “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.” Sin is not just something we do; it is part of who we are as fallen human beings. Only when we recognize the gravity of sin and its effects on our lives can we truly turn away from it and come to Christ.
Never did a sinner see the great evil of sin until he was first acquainted with the infinitely Great and Glorious God.
Only when we encounter God and His holiness do we see the true nature of sin. As we read in Isaiah 6:5, “And I said: ‘Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!‘” This verse reminds us that when we encounter God, we see ourselves as we truly are, and we realize the great evil of our sin.
Sin is not just a ‘problem’ that we can solve on our own; it requires a divine solution. As we come to know God and understand His character and holiness, we begin to see our sin in a new light. It is only through the power of the Holy Spirit that we can truly grasp the depth of our sin and our need for Christ.
In conclusion, Psalm 51 teaches us about the great heinous evil of sin and its devastating impact on our relationship with God. Sin is a rebellion against His holiness and righteousness and has severe consequences. We cannot be forgiven unless we repent of our sin and come to Christ. True repentance requires a deep understanding of the gravity of our sin, and we can only see the great evil of sin when we encounter God and His holiness.
A door of mercy has been opened by the blood of the Son of God: Pardon and rest are proclaimed to a rebellious, guilty, dying world. Repent therefore, and be converted; that your Sins may be blotted out.
But if after your Hardness and impenitent Heart, you continue to go on, treasuring up wrath against the Day of Wrath; you will know, to your everlasting grief, “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” (Hebrews 10:31)