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Psalm 51 Living Bible (TLB)

51 Written after Nathan the prophet had come to inform David of God’s judgment against him because of his adultery with Bathsheba, and his murder of Uriah, her husband.

O loving and kind God, have mercy. Have pity upon me and take away the awful stain of my transgressions. Oh, wash me, cleanse me from this guilt. Let me be pure again. For I admit my shameful deed—it haunts me day and night. It is against you and you alone I sinned and did this terrible thing. You saw it all, and your sentence against me is just. But I was born a sinner, yes, from the moment my mother conceived me. You deserve honesty from the heart; yes, utter sincerity and truthfulness. Oh, give me this wisdom.

Sprinkle me with the cleansing blood[a] and I shall be clean again. Wash me and I shall be whiter than snow. And after you have punished me, give me back my joy again. Don’t keep looking at my sins—erase them from your sight. 10 Create in me a new, clean heart, O God, filled with clean thoughts and right desires. 11 Don’t toss me aside, banished forever from your presence. Don’t take your Holy Spirit from me. 12 Restore to me again the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you. 13 Then I will teach your ways to other sinners, and they—guilty like me—will repent and return to you. 14-15 Don’t sentence me to death. O my God, you alone can rescue me. Then I will sing of your forgiveness,[b] for my lips will be unsealed—oh, how I will praise you.

16 You don’t want penance;[c] if you did, how gladly I would do it! You aren’t interested in offerings burned before you on the altar. 17 It is a broken spirit you want—remorse and penitence. A broken and a contrite heart, O God, you will not ignore.

18 And Lord, don’t punish Israel for my sins—help your people and protect Jerusalem.[d]

19 And when my heart is right,[e] then you will rejoice in the good that I do* and in the bullocks I bring to sacrifice upon your altar.

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 51:7 Sprinkle me with the cleansing blood, literally, “Purge me with hyssop”; see Exodus 12:22; Hebrews 9:18-22.
  2. Psalm 51:14 forgiveness, literally, “righteousness.”
  3. Psalm 51:16 penance, literally, “a sacrifice.”
  4. Psalm 51:18 and protect Jerusalem, literally, “do good in your good pleasure unto Zion; build the walls of Jerusalem.”
  5. Psalm 51:19 And when my heart is right, implied. then you will rejoice in the good that I do, literally, “then you will delight in the sacrifice of righteousness.”
Living Bible (TLB)

The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Psalm 51 New International Version (NIV)

Psalm 51[a]

For the director of music. A psalm of David. When the prophet Nathan came to him after David had committed adultery with Bathsheba.

Have mercy on me, O God,
    according to your unfailing love;
according to your great compassion
    blot out my transgressions.
Wash away all my iniquity
    and cleanse me from my sin.

For I know my transgressions,
    and my sin is always before me.
Against you, you only, have I sinned
    and done what is evil in your sight;
so you are right in your verdict
    and justified when you judge.
Surely I was sinful at birth,
    sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb;
    you taught me wisdom in that secret place.

Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean;
    wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness;
    let the bones you have crushed rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins
    and blot out all my iniquity.

10 Create in me a pure heart, O God,
    and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me from your presence
    or take your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation
    and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.

13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways,
    so that sinners will turn back to you.
14 Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God,
    you who are God my Savior,
    and my tongue will sing of your righteousness.
15 Open my lips, Lord,
    and my mouth will declare your praise.
16 You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it;
    you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.
17 My sacrifice, O God, is[b] a broken spirit;
    a broken and contrite heart
    you, God, will not despise.

18 May it please you to prosper Zion,
    to build up the walls of Jerusalem.
19 Then you will delight in the sacrifices of the righteous,
    in burnt offerings offered whole;
    then bulls will be offered on your altar.

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 51:1 In Hebrew texts 51:1-19 is numbered 51:3-21.
  2. Psalm 51:17 Or The sacrifices of God are
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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