Nov 19 2021 Model of Gratefulness, Part 1
One of my favorite psalms is Psalm 103, and one of my favorite characters wrote it: David, the great Bible personality. In the Scriptures, God calls David a man after his own heart. So let’s look at Psalm 103:1, “Bless the Lord, all my soul and all that is within me, bless his holy name.”
What does it mean to bless somebody or in this case, to bless the Lord? To praise them; to exalt them; to focus attention on the Lord or on them, not us; to express humble appreciation for all that he has done for us. So, if “blessed” means to praise, then who do I praise? Who do I bless?
It says, “Bless the Lord.” So HE is the object of my affection.
It says, “Bless the Lord, O my soul!” The soul means from our very innermost being, from the very essence of who we are, from all that we are, we praise him as best we can. We praise him. We thank him.
It says, “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me.” How much do we bless? All that is within us. Focus all the attention on him. Express appreciation for him with all of my soul. All that is within me, I bless his holy name.
You might remember that David had quite a background. I mean, he had messed up… a bunch, big time! And yet something had happened to him through all the messages, through all the adversity, through all the hardship and heartaches that he had been through, he comes now in Psalm 103 and he says, “Praise the Lord!” — the Lord that he had offended, the Lord that he had disappointed, the Lord that he had sinned against. Something has happened in his life and inside of his heart. How did that change happen? He had experienced and encountered a grateful God, a God that loved him and had poured out everything for him. And in response, David pens this poem and this song, Psalm 103. Let’s look at verse two. He says, “Bless the Lord, O my soul. And forget none of his benefits.” David is thinking back to all the benefits the Lord has afforded him. And in verse 3, this powerful verse, he says, “who forgives all your iniquities or your sin…”
Who pardons all your iniquities or your sin… How many of them? All, not some, but all – past, present, and future. If you know Jesus Christ, if he lives in you, he’s got you covered through what he did on the cross. Because Jesus shed his blood on the cross, you can have forgiveness of all your sins.
Why don’t you take a moment, go back and review the last month, the last few days, and review your sins? What sins have you committed? What things have you stubbed your toe on? Where have you messed up? And what has he forgiven in your life as a result of it? As you’ve confessed to him, the things that you’ve done, what has he forgiven? Look at those specific things that you’ve asked him to forgive you for… and review what he has forgiven you for!
So how many of the sins has he forgiven in my life and in your life? He says, “who forgives all – A L L – our sins, our iniquities, our blenders, our messes.”
Psalm 103:10-12, “He has not dealt with us according to our sins nor punished us according to our iniquities, for as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward those who love him, respect him and fear him. As far as the east is from the west so far has he removed our sins or our transgressions from him.” That’s what you’d call a complete forgiveness, man.
Get this understanding in your heart of what he’s done for you. Listen, the greatest benefit Jesus has given us is he’s forgiven us. He’s forgiven us. It’s a blank slate. He’s cleaned the slate.
For example, a Christian young man continually repeated certain sins over and over again. And he came again to the Lord to confess that once again, he’d blown it. He comes to the Lord saying, “Lord here I am, again, same old stuff, same old sin.” And the Lord speaks back to him and says, “What sin?”
When the Lord forgives, he forgets. Isaiah chapter 43: 25 says, “And even I am he who blots out your transgressions for my own sake. And I will not remember your sin.” He won’t remember our sin. He’s not going to bring it up again. You know, sometimes in marriages or in relationships, when we get cross with somebody, we’ll bring up all the old disagreements and arguments from the past. But God never does that. If he’s forgiven you of something a moment ago, a month ago, whenever it was – it’s gone! And he will not bring it up again.
There’s a great song that I love that goes something like this, “Gone, gone, gone, gone. Yes, my sins are gone. Now my soul is free and in my heart’s a song. Buried in the deepest sea, yes, that’s good enough for me. I shall live eternally, praise God. My sins are G O N E — gone.”
Do you know that freedom from sin in your own life? Do you know that freedom from guilt in your own life? Why don’t you thank him like David did and thank him daily for cleaning you up and continuing to forgive you?
And if that’s not your experience, if you don’t know that freedom or his forgiveness, then why don’t you pause right now and ask Jesus to come in your life, set up residence in you and clean you up? And then you’ll be able to stand up and look people in the eye because he has touched you, forgiven you and cleaned you up and he’ll never bring it up again.
You think about that.