Our passage today is taken from the book of Psalms. It was one of the prayers of David. Its main background is when he sinned against God as recorded in 2 Samuel 11:15. It is when he coveted Batsheba and murdered Uriah, husband of Batsheba by putting him in the front line to be killed by the enemies.

After these events, the house of David was completely in chaos and his own sons had rivalries that resulted to killing one another.

king david praying

Psalms 51:12

10     Create in me a clean heart, O God,

and renew a right spirit within me.

11     Cast me not away from your presence,

and take not your Holy Spirit from me.

12     Restore to me the joy of your salvation,

and uphold me with a willing spirit. [1]

Psalms 23:3

3       He restores my soul.

He leads me in paths of righteousness

for his name’s sake. [2]

In his prayer, David was asking three things for he can no longer see this in him. These three things are also the most common things that are lacking to many Christians these days because of sin:

  1. Clean Heart – A clean heart is a heart that desires what God wants. When we started giving in to sin, we also started to compromise more, thus giving in to sin one after the other. This is true especially when we are already trapped in one wrong decision and then giving birth to another wrong decision then to sin. But a clean heart is a heart that desires God’s will. Do we still desire God’s will? Do we still pursue righteousness? Do we still pursue peace to one another? Do we still bear one another in love? Do we still love meeting together?

A clean heart is a heart that glorifies God. We can never glorify God if we are still living in sin. It’s just impossible to do because God is holy and therefore, we need to be holy. Ephesians 1:4, we have been chosen before the beginning of the world to be “holy and blameless” in his sight.

A clean heart is free from wickedness. If our heart is clean, then we hate sin. We will avoid sin just as Joseph run away from temptation; we should also do the same. Running away does not mean you are not a man. But temptation is temptation and it is very hard to win temptation. The best way to overcome it is to turn around and run away from it.

  1. Holy Spirit – Notice here that the Holy Spirit was mentioned. In the New Testament, we can see that before Jesus went to heaven Jesus said to his disciples: 15 “If you love me, keep my commands. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be[a]in you. (John 14:15-17)

David recognizes that there is a very special anointing that was given to him, and that is through the Holy Spirit. However, here what we can see is that David was pleading to God that the Holy Spirit will not be taken away from him. Sin does hinder the Holy Spirit to work freely in ones person’s heart.

Here David doesn’t seem to be enjoying the guidance of the Holy Spirit. He knows he lacks something. He may still have it, but there’s no activity in him because of sin. This is why the Bible also urges us to be holy.

This also tells us that we need to recheck ourselves if we still have the blessings of the Holy Spirit. Are we still enjoying the presence of our Lord?

  1. The Joy of Salvation – Many Christian have lost the joy of salvation for various reasons, but it all boils down to sin. The time that we have accepted the Lord Jesus Christ, we know that we have been saved.

During the time of David, he also knows that he needs God to be saved. And he knows that God is with him, unfortunately he is no longer enjoying that salvation. Why? Because of sin. He doesn’t feel that joy anymore, the joy of having God by his side in whatever he does.

You yourself know when God is with you, and you also know when God is not with you. You know when you are still enjoying the benefits of being a Christian. However, some of us are no longer enjoying it simply because we are far away from the Lord.

Here are the signs that we are no longer enjoying it:

  1. Lack of interest of coming to church during Sunday.
  2. Does not read the Bible
  3. Does not have any interest of coming to prayer meeting.
  4. Still compromising in many aspects of life.
  5. Went back to old kind of life like that of non-Christian.

Challenge: I do not know what’s your story. But you know yourself where you are right now. But I want you to look at yourself at this very moment and see if you are still right with God. Know if you are still enjoying Christianity, look in yourself if the Holy Spirit’s anointing is still in you. If not, then we need to humble down before the Lord at this very moment just as David humbled himself before the Lord.

[1] The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2001). (Ps 51:10–12). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

[2] The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2001). (Ps 23:3). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

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