| Have mercy on me, O God, |
according to your unfailing love;
according to your great compassion
blot out my transgressions.
|Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions.|
|Be gracious to me, O God, according to Your lovingkindness; |
According to the greatness of Your compassion blot out my transgressions.
|Psalm 51:1 |
O God! I ask for Your mercy! I deserve to be punished. But You are a God of lovingkindness and on that basis I ask that You not treat me the way I deserve. Your mercies are super-abounding and because of that I dare to ask that You erase my awful violations of Your holy law.
MacDonald, W., & Farstad, A. (1997, c1995). Believer's Bible Commentary : Old and New Testaments (Ps 51:1). : Thomas Nelson.
This is the classic passage in the OT on man's repentance and God's forgiveness of sin. Along with Ps. 32, it was written by David after his affair with Bathsheba and his murder of Uriah, her husband (2 Sam. 11-12). It is one of 7 poems called penitential psalms (6, 32, 38, 51, 102, 130, 143). To David's credit, he recognized fully how horrendous his sin was against God, blamed no one but himself, and begged for divine forgiveness.