Psalms 32, 71, 56

It sounds like I’m calling a football play: Psalms 32, 71, 56, hike!

Poetry for me is pretty hit or miss. Some of it is beautiful, but a lot of it is difficult to understand. Why talk in pretty metaphor when you can just speak plainly?

But Hebrew poetry is beautiful. I love that most of it is written in couplets that repeat one another. Didn’t catch it the first time? How about in the paraphrase? Very helpful for us non-poets.

It also helps me to think of the Psalms as song lyrics. I might not be too keen on poetry, but I love music. And what are song lyrics, really, but poetry?

So here are my thoughts today on lyrics to 32, 71, and 56.

What does this passage say about God, Jesus, and/or the Holy Spirit?

Psalm 32 is a forgiveness psalm. Of the three I read today, this one was my favorite by far.

It reminds me of when I first turned my life over to Jesus. That feeling in knowing that no matter what I had done before, it had been forgiven, washed away. That I could start life over with a clean, fresh slate. There is huge freedom in that.

Now that we are believers, it doesn’t mean that we won’t sin. We still have that wonderful chance of forgiveness for even the worst of our wrongdoings. The key is that we must confess our sins and be genuinely sorry for them.

What does this passage tell us about people, life, or faith?

I love v 8-9: The LORD says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you. Do not be like a senseless horse or mule that needs a bit and bridle to keep it under control.”

The idea here is that we stray. I know I do. I drift back and forth from distraction to the side where I put my head down and try to plow through asphalt. It’s because I can’t see the best path ahead of me–I don’t have God’s perspective. That’s why it is better to follow Him, so that He doesn’t have to correct us with the bit and bridle.

 

Why did God put this passage in the Bible?

To remind us that true joy is found in forgiveness. The guilt of unconfessed sin is crushing (v 3-4), but the gift of forgiveness is worth celebrating.

How does this passage relate to my life?

As a good writer friend of mine would say, this is an example of true shalom (peace). Joy is so much better than happiness. Joy is the assurance that no matter what is going on around us, God is with us so everything is okay. I feel shalom right now writing this. Following God and being happy to do it, that’s the best place in life.

How can I put this truth into practice?

Ask forgiveness for any unconfessed sin. And always – keep my eyes on Jesus.

Prayer: Let these posts not be about me, let them be about You. Help me keep my eyes on You, Jesus. I want to sit at Your feet, drink from the cup in Your hand…

 

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