In one of the Psalms, David writes:
“O God, you know my folly; the wrongs I have done are not hidden from you.” (Psalm 69:5 ESV)
I find this very encouraging. It is encouraging that God knew the folly and wrongs of David. Why? Because, despite this, David still knew he could pour out his heart to God. He didn’t think he had to hide or ignore his sins in order to approach God. He didn’t have to put on an air of respectability or fake righteousness to come to God in prayer.
People are not like this. If your closest friends knew everything about you, they probably wouldn’t like you anymore. If they could peer into your heart, they might become disgusted. But God does see everything about us. He peers into our hearts. “The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good” (Prov. 15:3). As the catechism puts it, “Nothing is hidden from God.”
And despite this, God loves his people. David goes on to say:
When the humble see it they will be glad;
you who seek God, let your hearts revive.
For the LORD hears the needy
and does not despise his own people who are prisoners.
Let heaven and earth praise him,
the seas and everything that moves in them.
For God will save Zion
and build up the cities of Judah,
and people shall dwell there and possess it;
the offspring of his servants shall inherit it,
and those who love his name shall dwell in it.
(Psalm 69:32-36 ESV)
David was confident that the God who knew his sins would hear him and not despise him. Of course, we know why God does this. He does this because his people are righteousness – not with a righteousness of their own, but with the righteousness of Christ. God made his Son who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of God in him (2 Cor. 5:21). The gospel – the salvation wrought by Christ for us – is therefore the basis of our prayers, and is why, with David, we can come with boldness to the throne of grace to find mercy and find grace to help in time of need (Heb. 4:16).
~ Jeremiah Bass