- Renée Coventry
Redemption from Sin - Psalm 130
Lest we become proud, exalting our nature above the wicked we lament against in Psalm 129, directly following it is Psalm 130, which turns a mirror to our sin. There is no room for hypocrisy in the body of Christ, and remembering from whence we came, and God's abundant mercy towards us provides an impetus for us to pray for those who don't know the LORD.
Out of the depths I have cried to You, O LORD. LORD, hear my voice! Let Your ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications. If You, LORD, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand? But there is forgiveness with You, that You may be feared. I wait for the LORD, my soul does wait, and in His word do I hope. My soul waits for the Lord more than the watchmen for the morning. O Israel, hope in the LORD; for with the LORD there is lovingkindness, and with Him is abundant redemption. And He will redeem Israel from all his iniquities.
Everyone has depths from which they cry because we live in a world of sin. We're surrounded by it, tempted by it, give place to it, and allow it to skew our thinking, which results in sickness, perversity, and death. Having set eternity in our hearts, we call out to the eternal God, our Creator, even when we are unaware we are doing so (Eccl. 3:11). From our heart's deepest place, we pray God will hear us and be attentive to our plea. They are the vibrations of our soul reaching out for redemption.
Within this Psalm, there is a recognition that if God were to remember our sin, and only a God who recognized guilt and meted out the consequences, none of us could endure the wrath we deserve. We would all be utterly destroyed when confronted with the holiness of God – not just the wicked, but the righteous, as well, for it is nothing but filthy rags when attempted in our sinful flesh (Is. 64:6). What is so beautiful about this Psalm is the word but. BUT there is forgiveness in God. In Him, the deepest yearnings of my soul are met, and I can be redeemed.
A recognition of and repentance from sin BEFORE the fear of the Lord is established in our lives. We cannot claim reverence for God while ignoring His precepts and walking in contradiction to His word. Pardoning sin should bring about our awe and astonishment, not an attitude of entitlement that God owes us forgiveness. The connotation is that as we (the entirety of our person, including our fleshly appetites) wait upon Him, His Word becomes our hope. I wait to hear the utterances of His heart. I tarry in His presence until a favorable judgment is rendered on my behalf. I linger at God's throne until there is a breakthrough in my darkness. Thank God for Jesus who came to save us from ourselves (John 3:16-17)!
There is an unspoken idea that when I access the presence of Almighty God, the first thing I do is take care of any sin in my life. Ascending before His throne is not about the goosebumps that I may get during a worship service, but about exalting God for who He is – Savior, Creator, Omnipotent Lord, and the list goes on. We cannot presume to live in sin and expect all to be well when we do not walk with a repentant heart. King David was a man after God's heart not because he wrote songs to the Lord but because David understood the necessity of God's presence in his daily life, and David cultivated a posture and lifestyle of repentance.
God is good. He is a faithful, kind, merciful Lord who ransoms us and leads us into a plentiful place where His lovingkindness surrounds us. He is not willing that any should perish but that all come to repentance (2 Pt. 3:9). The LORD is a God of ransom and rescue, delivering ALL that come to Him seeking redemption from their perversity and depravity. He is for us. So, before we start pointing the finger (and there are things we must judge), dealing with our sin is paramount.
When we cry out against the wicked, we must do so with a heart that understands the redemptive nature of God, who is willing to save to the uttermost because He has done so for us. Yes, by all means, cry out for God's deliverance from evil, but remember that such were some of us, but we were washed, but we were sanctified, but we were justified "in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God" (I Cor. 6:11). There is a holy but for anyone who calls upon the Name of the LORD that brings salvation (Rom. 10:13). God alone is our hope and that of the whole world!