Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Your lovingkindness; according to the multitude of Your tender mercies, blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. Against You, You only, have I sinned, And done this evil in Your sight. That You may be found just when You speak, and blameless when You judge. Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
This passage of scripture is one of the classic Old Testament passages on man’s sin and God’s forgiveness. It points toward the New Testament fulfillment when Jesus took upon Himself our sin on the Cross of Calvary. David wrote this Psalm shortly after his sin with Bathsheba. David is holding on to God’s promises of mercy, loving-kindness and long-suffering for those who truly repent and turn their hearts back toward the Lord. David is also acknowledging that ultimately all sin at its core is rebellion against God. Only God can ultimately bring forgiveness and salvation. And salvation can only come from one source.
That one source is the Second Person of the Trinity, the one whose name is above all names, that is from Christ Jesus our Lord. The image here of being washed whiter than snow reminds us of the New Testament passages found in Mark 9:3, Matthew 28:3 and Revelation 1:14. And the Old Testament passages like Daniel 7:9. All of these passages use these terms to describe the divine appearance of Jesus our Lord. Remember the Psalms were meant as praises to the Lord and they were often set to music. This knowledge should bring joy to our hearts and a song to our lips. Knowing that because of Jesus our sins are removed far from us. Knowing we will one day walk with Jesus and spend eternity in His presence. Why? Because He first loved us and took our sin and gave us salvation in its place.