An Psalm of repentance and prayer for mercy
Psalm 51:1 Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. 51:2 Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.
Only sincere repentance and a wholehearted commitment to live by every Word of God will bring cleansing from sin by the application of the sacrifice of Christ the Lamb of God (Rom 2:13).
51:3 For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me [We are to be always alert to seek out and expunge our sins]. 51:4 Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: [let us accept that our own ways and stubborn self-will are wrong, and that God’s Word is right and the right way to live] that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest. 51:5 Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me. 51:6 Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom.
Psalm 51:7 Purge me with hyssop [Hyssop was used to sprinkle the blood of the lamb, this reference meaning please purge my sins by the blood of the Lamb of God.], and I shall be clean [from all sin]: wash me, [with the water of the Word of God (Eph 5:26)] and I shall be whiter than snow. 51:8 Make me to hear joy and gladness [tell me that I am forgiven so I can delight in thy salvation]; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. 51:9 Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities.
51:10 Create in me a clean heart [purify me from all sin and all proud self-will, to follow God] O God; and renew a right spirit [give us a proper godly attitude of love for God and loving zeal to live by every Word of God] within me. 51:11 Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. 51:12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation [deliver me by thy tender mercies, for I abhor my sins against the Word of God]; and uphold me with thy free spirit.
When we live by every Word of God, we set an example for all who see us; and we learn by doing the ways of God so that we may teach others to do the same.
51:13 Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee. 51:14 Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation: and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness.
51:15 O Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall shew forth thy praise. 51:16 For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering.
51:17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit [submissive humility before God with all stubborn self-will and pride crushed to powder]: a broken and a contrite heart [the pride of sin crushed to powder], O God, thou wilt not despise.
51:18 Do good in thy good pleasure unto Zion [Messiah come to Jerusalem and build the Kingdom of God]: build thou the walls of Jerusalem. 51:19 Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offering [When Christ comes God will convert Zion and Jerusalem to sincere repentance, and then their repentance (now sincere) and their sacrifices both physical and spiritual will be accepted.]: then shall they offer bullocks upon thine altar.
Sin and Trespass Offerings represent sin repented of and Burnt Offerings represent the righteousness of wholehearted obedience, dedication and Christ-like zeal to live by every WORD of God.