If you’re following the schedule, you should read these chapters today: Leviticus 25, Psalm 32, Ecclesiastes 8, 2 Timothy 4. Click on any of those references to see all the passages in one long page on BibleGateway. If you can't do all the readings today, read Psalm 32.
I really want to write about Leviticus 25 today but I’ve written on Leviticus a lot recently. I just think it is so gracious of the Lord to MAKE people take time off. In a time when people worked just to survive and starvation was a real threat, God said—trust me! Take a day off to rest each week, take a year off after six years of work and again after 49 years of this cycle. What a promise from God to provide for his people. If only they would have trusted him, they could have rested and enjoyed themselves and he would have provided everything for them.
But, it is hard to ignore Psalm 32. Although sin calls to us and offers us happiness, the result of sin is short term pleasure followed by long-term pain and eventually death. In this Psalm David stopped to praise the Lord for forgiveness and said that one who gets forgiveness from God is the one who is truly happy (“blessed” — verses 1-2). Verses 3-4 described the consequences of his sin. These consequences were not external to David, though sin usually has plenty of those. No, the consequence of David’s sin was the inner turmoil of a guilty heart. We don’t know if this Psalm followed the forgiveness he received after he sinned with Bathsheba and killed Uriah but that might be the background. Whatever sin and forgiveness prompted this song weighed down David’s heart deeply. Even if no one ever found out what he had done, he knew and so did God. The result of that knowledge was a complete robbery of his joy. Finally in verse 5 David stopped suppressing his sin and decided to make a full confession to God. Since God is rich in mercy, he freely forgave David based on the coming merits of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. David then urges those who love the Lord but slip into sin to come forward and confess (v. 6a). The result of this confession is protection (vv. 6b-7); whatever consequences he might face for his sin, he did so with God’s favor in his life again. This is the only way to live for those who know God, so come to the Lord and find the relief of forgiveness that he so generously offers to the repentant.
After receiving forgiveness, the voice of this Psalm seems to change from David’s voice to God’s (vv. 8-10). God promises to to instruct and guide the life that is truly repentant for sin (vv. 8-9), protecting his people through obedience from the pain and problems that come with a morally crooked life. The result of confession is true joy (v. 11).
This passage reminds us of the genuine relief that comes from openly confessing your guilt. You’ve experienced this in your life as a Christian already; if you’re hiding sin in your life, come out of shadows and enjoy the lift that comes from God’s gracious forgiveness!
Now for your thoughts: What stood out in your Bible reading for today? What questions do you have about what you read? What are your thoughts about what I wrote above? Post them in the comments below or on our Facebook page. And, feel free to answer and interact with the questions and comments of others. Have a great day; we'll talk scripture again tomorrow.