Psalm 51:7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
8 Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.
9 Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.
11 Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.
12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.
13 Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.
Psalm 51 describes some of the dire consequences resulting from David’s sin with Bathsheba (see 2 Samuel chapters 11-12). The Psalm commences with David’s testifying about his desire to be washed (verse 7). The next verse speaks of his desire to hear joy and gladness. David then goes on to express his desire for a clean heart and a right spirit. David was experiencing the debilitating results of his sin. Sin diminishes the spiritual blessings that God intends. In addition to these lost blessings, David also lost his joy. Joy is offered to the people of God, but never unconditionally. The conditions necessary for fulness of joy were discussed in the previous lesson, but it should be noted that the opposite actions yield contrary outcomes.
· (For children): Two children snuck some cookies off the table without permission. When asked about the missing cookies, one child told the truth and said he was sorry; the other child lied. The truthful child walked away with joy in his heart. The other child was miserable because his sin will be “before him” (Psalm 51:3b) until he admits it.
· (For everyone): Do you rejoice in serving the Lord, or is it more of a burden? Do you find joy in Bible reading and prayer, or do you find it burdensome?
· Have you lost your joy? Look back over your life and consider why you might have lost it? What are you willing to do to seek the Lord concerning its restoration?
· Ask the Lord to help you see whether or not you have the joy of the Lord in your life daily.
· If joy has been lost, ask the Lord to show you how to restore it in your life.
Song: Lord, I’m Coming Home