Who can discern his errors? Forgive my hidden faults. Keep your servant also from wilful sins; may they not rule over me. Then I will be blameless, innocent of great transgression.
Having reflected on the glory of God revealed in creation (v.1-6) and on the all-encompassing wisdom, blessing and effectiveness of God’s laws (v.7-11), David is brought to the place where he humbly acknowledges his position before his God as a sinner ‘prone to wander’ from the right way (v.12-13)
He is aware first of the danger of hidden faults, hidden because either he is genuinely unaware of all the ways in which he so easily strays from the right way or possibly hidden because of the perverseness of the human heart pretending that they were not wrong. Then second, of wilful sinning, wilful disobedience which can so easily take a hold, ‘may they not rule over me.’
He prays in the assurance that with such a prayer answered, he will be blameless and innocent of great transgression. Tragically as we know David was indeed guilty of great transgression in the events recorded in 2 Samuel 11ff. but God was true to his promise and answered David’s prayer with the assurance that ‘the LORD has put away your sin; you shall not die’ 2 Samuel 12.13. Nevertheless David carried with him for the remainder of his life the scars that his great transgression earned him. He was forgiven but paid a price.
When great David’s greater son, died on the Cross, those who are his were declared justified – blameless and the scars of that sin were transferred to the Lord Jesus.
Therefore we have even more reason as forgiven sinners to pray as David did.
For acknowledging that we are sinners (albeit forgiven); that we are guilty of hidden faults; that such is the perverseness of sinners that we still commit wilful sins; and rejoicing that, in the death of our Saviour – we are blameless in God’s sight for his Son as taken the blame. What reason to worship and to pray!
Ponder this morning, the depth and the wonder of that transaction and seek God’s help to be what you have been made – blameless. Then seek by his Spirit, and in his strength, to avoid all thoughts and actions that mar that blameless walk.