For the sake of your name, Lord,
forgive my iniquity, though it is great. Psalm 25:11
While in college in Birmingham, the church I attended had a prayer room that stayed open 24 hours a day. One night I was struggling with my own lustful thoughts and actions. I went to the prayer room, read scripture, prayed, sat quietly and cried. I felt as though my prayers went to the ceiling and stopped. God was silent.
Eventually, I left the room and started walking down Hwy 280 toward the construction project of I459. I stood there contemplating turning left toward Atlanta or right heading west. God was silent.
I turned right and walked on the deserted construction project. At this point I was free to express to God the angst in my heart since I was all alone. A winter and cold rain began to fall on me as I walked
Finally, I stopped talking to God about trying to understand my failure and I started talking to Him about His character. I shouted out, “God don’t you care!?!”
Our verse today just needs a little tweaking to capture the essence of David’s prayer. “For the sake of your name, Lord” carries the idea of “to be consistent with your character or reputation.” God from the very beginning forgave Adam and Eve. He forgave the sins of the nation of Israel again and again. David is leaning into God’s character as one who is know to forgive. “As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.” Psalm 103:12
“Iniquity” carries the idea of the whole bulk of work and not one action. Like, there is one book, but it is filled with many pages.
“Though it is great” does not necessarily mean the intense gravity of the action. Rather, the Hebrew word carries the idea of abundance or multitude.
So let’s put the verse together. “Lord, you are forgiving and have a reputation as one who forgives, so, pardon my life of sins, for the are numerous.”
The power of Jesus sacrificial death in our place cancels all debts owed by our sin. We are forgiven. And that makes us free indeed.
Lightening struck. God was no longer silent. I asked forgiveness for arrogance and began to speak to him as the wonderful, forgiving God that He is. I made it to the Waffle House in Vestavia and called my roommate to come and pick me up. I truly believe that night set the trajectory of my heart toward freedom and to pursuing my God for a lifetime.
Blessings Love y’all