May 9, 2014
(All scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated.)
There are other psalms that seem to contain reference to David’s sad time of sin involving adultery and murder. But we will continue this series, Praying for Forgiveness, with a look at Psalm 38. Here are verses 2 through 8:
…Your arrows pierce me deeply, and Your hand presses me down. There is
no soundness in my flesh because of Your anger, nor is there any health in
my bones because of my sin. For my iniquities have gone over my head; like
a heavy burden they are too heavy for me. My wounds are foul and festering
because of my foolishness. I am troubled, I am bowed down greatly; I go
mourning all the day long. For my loins are full of inflamation, and there is
no soundness in my flesh. I am feeble and severely broken; I groan because
of the turmoil of my heart.
This passage maybe should be the second offering of this study, after the first – the introduction describing what happened when King David sinned – as recorded in II Samuel 12. Perhaps it should be examined even before looking at Psalm 53 – David’s great psalm of repentance. Why? Because it describes what happens when the believing sinner has not confessed his or her transgression and repented of it.
Several things sin will do:
• Psalm 38:2 – “…Your arrows pierce me deeply, and Your hand presses me down.” – God will not let the believing sinner continue in the way his or her rebellious heart is leading! He will pierce that one deeply, He will increasingly press down upon him or her! The writer of Hebrews puts it this way in Hebrews 4:12 and 13:
For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged
sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and mar-
row, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. And there is
no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the
eyes of Him to whom we must give account.
Here, the Word of God is the written Word empowered by the Living Word, Jesus Christ, through the presence and power of the Holy Spirit. And by that Word, God will increasingly put on the pressure so the believer will find it more and more difficult to continue in his or her sin.
• Psalm 38:3 – “There is no soundness in my flesh because of Your anger, nor is there any health in my bones because of my sin.” In Proverbs 14:30 (NIV) it says, “A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones.” You can replace envy with any sin there is, and it will hold true! Sin “…rots the bones…”! God created us to be an interactive unit of body, soul and spirit! When one of the three is out of whack, the whole person is sick and unsound!
Years ago, I knew a guy who bought a brand new 1967 Chevy 396 and modified it exclusively for drag racing. It was fast – well over 100 mph and in the high 13’s in the quarter! But one time down the strip at about 7,000 rpm, the flywheel exploded, tore through the floor board, and almost severed his foot! It seems the flywheel was just a bit out of balance! It was no problem at 5,000 rpm and under, but at drag racing speeds, it precipitated a disaster!
You can get by with some of life’s slower times when not all is in balance. But just watch out when things get really spinning! The whole thing can seem to explode!
I believe it is good advice when a Christian experiences sickness – especially persistent sickness that seems to elude a physical diagnosis – that one should check his or her spiritual condition and see if there is unconfessed sin and an unrepentant heart! For “A heart at peace [before God] gives life to the body,” but sin brings rot !
• Psalm 38:4 – “For my iniquities have gone over my head; like a heavy burden they are too heavy for me.” From personal experience, I know that life flows much more smoothly when I am right with God! When I am out of fellowship with my Lord because of sin in my life, I can feel more and more inundated – drowning, as it were – with a heavy weight tied around my neck! Confession and repentance before our Creator removes the weight of sin and brings us back from drowning to once again breath the sweet air at the surface!
We will continue to examine what sin can do to us on Monday.