January 17 2023
Today, Tuesday January 17
The Greatest Experience Ever!
“Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, Whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man to whom the LORD does not impute iniquity, And in whose spirit there is no deceit.”
I am convinced that the greatest human emotion that a person can experience is the sense or the knowledge that they have been forgiven! And that God loves and accepts me! I will never forget the day, February 21, 1971, in Cincinnati Ohio, on the church property of Landmark Baptist Temple, at the house of Dr. Harold Rawlings, around 4pm in the afternoon, when I fell on my knees and confessed that I was a sinner in desperate need of salvation. At that moment, the overwhelming emotion of forgiveness flooded my soul, and the burden, the weight and guilt of sin was lifted off me and I felt that I could walk on clouds. The tears were flowing, my heart was full of joy, and the darkness of sin was forever gone!!!!!
That is what the first two verses of this Psalm are about! Instead of starting with a catalog of his sins, David launched into the psalm with a song of praise for everybody in the assembly to hear. Remember the first beatitude in the Psalms pronounces blessing on the obedient (Psalm 1:1), but this second beatitude pronounces blessing on the disobedient who have been forgiven. Chronologically, this experience of David’s forgiveness came long after he had committed his sins and covered them up for almost a year (vv. 3-5). But having now entered into the freedom of forgiveness, David couldn't wait to shout about it. If we know we have acceptance with God, it matters not what else may happen to us.
David uses several words here to describe what sin is. “Transgression” is "crossing over the line" and rebelling against God. David knew the Ten Commandments and that adultery, murder, and deceit were forbidden. “Sin” means "to miss the mark" and not live up to the standards God has set. “Iniquity” means "twisted" and describes what happens to the inner character of the sinner. “Guile” (In Old King James) means "deception." This vocabulary of sin will reappear in verse 5.
For about a year David tried to cover his sins and pretend nothing had happened, but the Lord chastened him until he confessed that he had sinned. “Forgive” means to remove a burden. In the Old Testament it is pictured by the "scapegoat" in the Day of Atonement service (Leviticus 16). The priest would take two goats for this ceremony. One of the goats would be sacrificed and its blood would be taken into the Most Holy Place and put on the horns of the altar to atone for the sins and transgressions of the people of Israel.
The priest would then take the other goat, the “scapegoat”, and lay his hands on its head and confess the sins of the people. Then this “scapegoat would be driven deep into the wilderness. Symbolically this goat "carried" the sins of the people into the wilderness (Lev. 16:20-22; Ps. 103:12; John 1:29), where they would be forever gone!
Like Adam and Eve (Gen. 3:8), David tried to "cover" his sins, but his schemes didn't work. They never do (Prov. 28:13), but when God covers the sins we confess to Him, they are hidden from sight and never seen again. (See Isa. 38:17, 43:25, 44:22; Jer. 31:34; Mic. 2:18-19; 1 John 1:7-9.) On the Day of Atonement, the blood of the sacrifice was sprinkled on the mercy seat by the high priest, and that covered the sins the people had committed.
“Impute” is a bookkeeping term that means "to put on the account, to add to the record." When we confess our sins, God cancels the debt and it's no longer on the books. As the children say, "It doesn't count anymore." Why? Because Jesus paid the debt on the cross, and His blood cleanses the record and the heart of the offender.
The forgiveness of the Lord is certainly something to sing and praise the Lord about! It's unfortunate that so many of God's children take it for granted. Have you ever experienced God’s acceptance and forgiveness by the gift of salvation through His Son Jesus Christ? (Roman 6:23) If you have, you indeed are a “Blessed” person!!!!