Message Magazine’s Online Devotional for Monday, February 8, 2016
This Week’s Devotional Focus is, “The Holy Spirit.”
“Cast me not away from thy presence; And take not thy holy spirit from me.” (Psalm 51:11).
King David had gotten himself into a terrible mess. You may recall that one day, as his soldiers were in a hot battle against God’s enemies, he was falling prey in the hottest assault on his character he had ever experienced—lust. As his soldier Uriah’s wife bathed, he got a glimpse, which turned into a gaze that subsequently moved into full-on lust, adultery, and cold-blooded murder. We will not go into the details of the story, because that is not our focus here. Suffice it to say that King David, who was not accustomed to turning his back on His Lord whom he loved so dearly, was in a pickle. After about a year of fighting with his conscience, God sent the prophet Nathan to bring him to repentance and his heart finally broke. He saw his sin for what it really was, and Psalm 51 is a beautiful treatise of the result. In my view, it depicts the clearest view of the road to truehearted repentance and restoration for all who have ever turned our backs on God.
In our theme text we see that God’s presence (in terms of good relationship), and His Spirit go hand-in-hand. One cannot have a good relationship with God if the Holy Spirit is not with us. David’s prayer underscores the fact that unconfessed and unforsaken sins are impediments to salvation and a willingness to do what God commands. For he said, “Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; And uphold me with thy free spirit.” (Psalm 51:12). Conversely, full confession of our sins and a restoration of that free, cooperative spirit within us causes us to recognize the details of our guilt and immediately makes us ambassadors of God’s grace to other sinners. For he said, “Then will I teach transgressors Your ways, and sinners shall be converted and return to You. Deliver me from bloodguiltiness and death, O God, the God of my salvation, and my tongue shall sing aloud of Your righteousness (Your rightness and Your justice).” (Psalm 51:13–14, AMP). Ultimately, if we are receptive to the leading of God’s Holy Spirit, we yearn not only to be forgiven and guilt-free, but we also desire new hearts that align with His will. The King said, “Create in me a clean heart, O God; And renew a right spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:10).
I suppose the most important takeaway from this power-packed few moments in devotional thought is that the Holy Spirit is the singular Agent who brings us to right relationship with the Father and the Son. Without Him, we would never be restored to salvation. This is why it is our privilege to know and appreciate God, the Holy Spirit today.