Have Your Way
(12) Who can discern his (own) errors? Cleanse me of hidden faults. (13) Hold back your servant also from willful sins. Let them not rule over me. Then I will be blameless, innocent of great transgression. (14) May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Yahweh, my rock and my redeemer.
In the remaining three verses of this psalm, David examines how God’s Word functions in our lives to admonish and correct us as well as to cleanse and shield us from sin that would separate and alienate us from a holy God. David appropriately brings the psalm to a close with a prayer that believers of all ages have used to express their desire to honor Yahweh with their lives. We do this by wholeheartedly submitting to his will as expressed in his Word.
I. Acknowledging our sinfulness and need for cleansing (12 & 13)
II. Seeking God’s evaluation and approval (14)
When we grasp how God’s truth enables us to overcome our sinfulness, we will readily submit to his working in our lives by means of his Word.
The contrast set forth in Psalm 19 could not be more striking: the beauty and power of God’s revelation as found both in the heavens above and in the Scripture we hold in our hands as opposed to the ugliness and frailty of our own sinful lives and the lives of those in the world around us. David’s message is clear. In our struggle to overcome sin and live in a way that pleases God, his Word is utterly essential. Paul gave the same message to Timothy at the end of his life: “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16,17).
That is why those who seek to live for God must do so submitted to the authority of Scripture. It is not enough to read it occasionally or casually. Only when we study it, meditate on it, memorize it, and seek to assimilate its truths into our lives will we be cleansed and strengthened by it. And this is precisely how the prayer which ends Psalm 19 so fittingly plays a part. When we have done all that we can to understand what the Word of God says, we should pray earnestly that the Holy Spirit will transform and mature us in accordance with our understanding of his truth.