Tuesday, November 19, 2019

The Gospel According to David

Link to my Youtube Channel with the full process video, HERE.

Hello, sweet and loving friends!

Deeds here, with another post featuring the November release from Sweet n Sassy Stamps!
I think we as the creative team more or less geeked out about the gorgeously-made stamps set, "Folk Art Snowflakes!"  Now in our crafting space, these stamps have taken on many forms and uses, helping to inspire others to creatively think outside the box.  It's a joy to see how YOU have been creating with these, and what a pleasure to know that you've found them to be useful in your creative worship as well as card-making!  Additionally, I'm working with the "Art Deco Alpha" stamp set which has been a joy and thrill in its own ways! Click on icons below to visit the store! I have a full process video on Youtube for this page, so be sure to check it out!

Psalm 51... Wow.
Y'all... I have to be super honest and frank about it.  I struggled with this Psalm a lot.  Well, I struggled with this blog  I've written about it a lot.
Have you read Psalm 51?  Have you read it recently?  Have you read it with fresh eyes?  Did you collect insight this time, that you never had before?
Is not the Word of God living and active?
ABSOLUTELY I've been so blessed by this Psalm even new and afresh today!  I read it about a couple weeks ago and couldn't take my eyes off of it; I didn't want to miss a single thing.  For that reason, this blog may be a bit longer than my usual blogs, but please hang tight with me.  What I'm blogging about today is serious and beautiful; enrapturing and captivating: the Gospel according to David.
I hope I do it justice, and may the Lord speak to you as He spoke to me through his word... Amen.

The general background of this Psalm is laid out in the header: "A Psalm of David, when Nathan came to him after he'd gone to Bathsheba."
More specifically, this is post-adultery, post-covetousness, post-fornication, post-deception, post-murder.  The list of transgressions is fairly serious and all done by one man.
I've often wondered how David, "the man after God's heart," could do all of the above.  Then I remember, David: a human.  A purebred sinner.  Ensnared by the inherent sin nature at birth, just like you and me. 
What had he done that I have not? 
What tendencies toward sin and rebelliousness did he have that I too, have not experienced?
What sin had entangled him that has not - at some point - bound my feet?
Wait, what?  Deeds, you're a murderer?  An adulterer?  A liar?

Let's look at something as an example very quickly, so you see what I mean.  After all, Jesus, who walked and talked the fullness of the law of God, taught, "You have heard that it was said to our ancestors, 'do not murder,' and whoever murders will be subject to judgment.  But I tell you, whoever is angry with his brother or sister will be subject to judgment."  (Matthew 5:21)
The implications of Jesus' statement are huge! 
I'VE been sinfully angry before!  What in the world do we do with anger wrongly channeled?  How can I possibly stand up in His judgments against the murderer??

Enter Psalm 51.
From the beginning, it's easy to see the different pieces of this broken mess of a man.  I'm picturing snot and tears, wailing and groaning.  I see his pinched facial expressions as the result of a remembrance of inward rebellion turned outward.  I see a man, once confident, strong, and bold, in a gooey heap on the floor, face in hands, heart in shambles.
Penitence.  Sorrow. 
I've often wondered how David, harp player, worship leader, army slayer, could even "show" his face to the Almighty after being the cause of such harm, devastation and havoc! 
Then I remember: God. 

The short of it is grace, but oh, how we can relate to David well!  In fact, just as an extra bit of inspiration from the heart of God, the header to Psalm 51 also includes this: "for the choir director."
This doesn't mean that the conductor of the choir secretly suffered from an adulterous past, a murderous heart, or covetous eyes.  Simply, this means David sang his own infamy and humiliation for the betterment of others.  He wrote it for others to relate to.  He composed all lyrics - probably on the famous lyre - so others (e.g. you and me) may see what sin in the face of God looks like, and the over-powering, towering grace of the Lord over sin for those who are contrite.  Broken.  Snot and tears, broken.

Whereas, once I looked at this Psalm as a plead for mercy and "cleaning up" after the sin onslaught, today and ever more, I see the Gospel.  I see the salvation of God to all "who confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead..." (Romans 10:9)
Try to sink yourself into each section of verses, identifying each step of the walk toward the salvation of God; each broken piece, coming together under the purifying work of the Holy Spirit; each proclamation of truth of the Gospel, the power with which it will break and heal, and the glory with which it can wash and transform.

The Gospel of Awakening & Grace.
Verses 1-5 contain evidence of what we know - of which David was also fully aware - of an active rebellious heart.  In the beginning stage of salvation, we appeal to the undeserved favor of God as our "sin is ever before" us.  One who is on the edge of sin's cliff, can fall headfirst into mercy's ravine.  David instructs the travesty that is "human nature," guiding us into a full and hearty confessional to seek His tender mercies and embrace His faithful love.  Words like "completely wash away my guilt," helps us to see that David did not just want a superficial cleansing: rather he wanted it ALL.  All his heart.  All his soul.  All his being.  Cleaned, washed, renewed.  God can and God WILL do a mighty work in us to rid us of underlying corruption.
To be sure, David is not telling God to look past his sin, to tolerate his sin, to erase his sinful past, or to ignore His sense of justice.  In fact, the psalmist acknowledges God as the right and just Judge when he says, "So You are right when you pass sentence; You are blameless when You judge." (v. 4)  But in the same way that God cannot forget who He is in His justice, He cannot forget who He is in His grace which is the very character trait for which David cries out.
"To an awakened conscience," Charles Spurgeon writes, "pain on account of sin is not transient and occasional, but intense and permanent, and this is no sign of divine wrath, but rather a sure preface of abounding favour." (His commentary on Psalm 51)  Praise the Lord for awakening us to our sin and His grace!

The Gospel of Repentance & Joy.
The next section of verses (6-13) details the admission of guilt and the joy that comes from healing and restoration following being "crushed" by the LORD.  Let's not be confused by words like "joy," "rejoice," or "be glad," in this section.  Being crushed by Yahweh, the Almighty, the Sovereign, the Creator, the Righteous, the Judge, is no mere thing.  It's chastening.  It's difficult discipline.  It takes time.  It takes re-shaping.  It's refining, and refining through fire.  It's purifying, and purifying through dying to self.  The Great I AM digs deeply into each of His children, pulls, wrenches, chisels, and prunes the fibers of our sin nature away; when the Lord Almighty chastens, the effectual work of the Holy Spirit will be a heart more lovely, more worshipful, more desire-full, more like Jesus.
There IS a joy in this scripture passage of the hope of complete healing and purifying.  David understands his utter transgression against God, but he also recognizes God as THE One and THE only God who can push underneath the grime of our hearts, uproot the junk and gunk of our humanity, and perfectly wash and restore!
Though he pleads with Yahweh, "do not take Your Spirit from me," he is not suggesting that God will un-promise what He has promised, or undo what He has done.  Rather, he's making a true turn to face the God in His rightful place as Head and Lead.  And, David understands his position - in stark contrast- is lowly in nature, un-sustained without the Lord, but ready for refreshed hope and joy!

The Gospel of Mercy & Restoration.
Then comes the final few verses in which the sinner, on his knees, offers himself to the Lordship of his God, that "by the mercies of God" he may present himself a "living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God," which would be his (and our) spiritual worship.  The Gospel is not just about a sin debt being paid and guilt being removed.  That is a huge "Hallelujah!" in my book for sure.  I love the lyric of the old hymn, "my sin not in part, but the whole" (It Is Well with My Soul).  Additionally, the Gospel refreshes, restores, and re-positions us to testify further of God's grace, compassion, steadfast love, and endless mercies.
"The Jesus Bible" says this, which I love and wanted to share with you:
"David knew he deserved punishment and judgment for his wrongdoings, recognizing that his sin was against God and God alone, yet he also knew that God is a God of forgiveness, mercy and compassion. 
"Even though David, a man after God's own heart, fell into sin, God didn't give up on him.  God took David's sin and and used it to display his goodness and his glory.  Solomon, son of David and Bathsheba, grew up to be the wisest man on earth (1 Kings 4:30-31).  And about a thousand years later, Jesus would come from that same lineage.  The Savior of the world was born into a lineage tainted by sin."  (pg. 847)
The life of a follower of God, pleases God in this: that he/she lives unto God, doing that which glorifies and makes much of His Holy name.  Jesus does not turn down the lowly and contrite.  His heart is for the poor women with only 2 coins and giving her all.  He leans ever-graciously toward the full outpouring of our heart, at His feet.  When we fall, He picks us back up to move forward in His name.  After our "cleansing" by His shed blood on the cross, we are set on a new path (Gal. 2:20), given a new name (Isaiah 56:5), and a new heart (Ezek. 36:26), all for our good and His glory!

And David knew it.
He didn't live to see his perfect, righteous Heir to the throne.  But you can be sure, this broken man was made alive in the Gospel of Jesus.
Again, Spurgeon had this to say on the topic:
"Nothing but the blood can take away my blood stains, nothing but the strongest purification can avail to cleanse me... Let Him who was appointed to atone, execute his sacred office on me; for none can need it more than I." (on his commentary for verse 7)
The Gospel is so full and unfettered, ready to wholly embrace the one who understands that "by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not as a result of  works, so that no one can boast." (Ephesians 2:8-9)  It brings the adulterer, the liar, the thief, the covetous, the murderer - yes, the angry person - a cleansing so rich and so free, so complete and so life-giving.  We need but turn to Jesus, the God-man who took all of the Father's wrath and judgment on Himself in death on the cross.  This Savior of the world was buried and raised in newness of life, being the first of many who would do the same.  Our hope is in this.  Our lives are dependent on this.  Our future hinges here - the Gospel - that our lives may be full and our eternity with the Father, set.

Do you know Jesus, friend?
Do you know you're cleansed by His blood as a believer?
Do you know the all-sufficient grace that covers the sin debt you owed pre-salvation?
Do you understand that the Gospel message is for you?
Jesus alone saves.
Jesus alone cleans.
Jesus alone purifies.
Jesus alone sanctifies.
Jesus alone.

Thank God for the the "Good news" which shall be unto all people, a Savior who is Christ the Lord!

Much love,


  1. I've had to read it 3 times just to BEGIN to glean all the goodness from it... and I'm not finished! I've copied the text, transferred to paper to study, to journal, to pray over. Deeds... you have a tremendous gift. You craft words that reach deep and resonate with the spirit of the reader. I'm so grateful you took the time God wanted to spend with you on this. We will all be more than blessed by it... this will create growth, deeper relationship with God. It ushers the Holy Spirit right into the heart. Well done good and faithful servant. I love your heart...I love you!!!

    1. Diane, this has touched me so much. I know you said something like this on Facebook, and I was blessed then too. Thank you for having such a warm heart toward me, and thank you so much for all the ways you've encouraged me to continue on! This is such a beautiful and unique thing about the body of Christ. I cannot get over it! Love you sister!