Bible Reading: 2 Samuel 12:1-15, Psalm 51

“The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.” (Psalm 51:17)

Nearing the end of this year, let us introspect our hearts once again for all the sins we have committed and the sins which still abide in our hearts. To us, our sins might seem permissible or even valid. But to God, they are evil, and they “utterly scorn the LORD” (2 Samuel 12:14). We ought to pray that God reveals our sins the way He sees them. 

Laying our hidden sins plain in God’s sight, pray for a broken and contrite God which God will not despise. Our initial response to sin is to reject it, hide it, or formulate some valid reason for it. In our deceitful hearts, we never want to see sin for what it really is — evil in God’s sight. God does not want us to attempt to fix our own hearts. That is impossible, and that only shows our inherent pride, which still thinks that we are good enough to be holy by ourselves. We must come humbly and helpless to God. It is only such people that God restores. 

At the end of this year, come humbly to ask God to clean your hearts. Pray with David, “Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have broken rejoice” (Psalm 51:7-8). 

A broken and contrite heart accepts God’s will for blessing and consequence wholeheartedly. As Nathan cursed David saying that evil would arise out of his house and his wives would be given to his neighbour and slept with him on the rooftops before the sun, David remained silent. He did not retaliate or argue with Nathan. Instead, he wholeheartedly submitted to God’s will. David simply responded, “I have sinned against the LORD”. For the rest of David’s days, he bore the shame of his sin. 

Evil prospered amongst David’s children, and David could do nothing but humbly accept God’s will for Him. David’s son Amnon raped his daughter Tamar. David’s son Absalom then killed Amnon and eventually usurped David’s throne. Finally, Absalom had to be murdered. Amidst all this, people like Shimei in 2 Samuel 16:5-14 mocked David, saying, “Get out, get out, you man of blood, you worthless man!”. David’s servants were mad at this nobody for mocking the king. Yet, in humility, David accepted that it was the Lord’s will to be humiliated and his throne overturned. 

Despite David’s seemingly ruined future, it is penitent and humble men that are pleasing before God’s sight. And to such people, God’s promise, “The LORD also has put away your sin; you shall not die” (2 Samuel 12:13), does not fail. David’s last words recorded in 2 Samuel 23:1-7 reveal David’s triumph and God’s goodness and blessing, which overflowed to David. 

2 Samuel 23:5 says, “For does not my house stand so with God? For he has made with me an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things and secure. For will he not cause to prosper all my help and my desire?”

David, the man after God’s own heart, was not perfect. He sinned greatly. Yet, his repentance and humility were what made him great. So may we learn to be humble as David was and walk in fear of the Lord. 

Lord, have mercy on us, for we are sinners before Your sight. Our hearts are clogged with evil that scorns You. Please forgive us. Cleanse us and give us broken and contrite hearts because those You will not despise. Plant the humble heart You gave to David in us as well as we soon enter the new year. In Jesus’ name, amen.