This is the last post of God’s Triumphant Mercy: A Reflection of Psalm 51
The book will be on Amazon by the end of this month.
Then will you delight in right sacrifices, in burnt offerings and whole burnt offerings; then bulls will be offered on your altar.
At the conclusion of his penitential psalm, David ends with God’s delight in right sacrifices. Such sacrifices can only come from “a broken and contrite heart,” having no pride or pretension. The then, though, doesn’t only refer to a right heart, but also to God’s work, as stated in the previous verse. To put it plainly: God only delights in the work of His hands. Ultimately, only His work will be acceptable to Him.
It’s when He does “good to Zion,” according to His good pleasure, and also builds their walls—protects and keeps them—that He delights in what we do. The good news is that our gladness and joy are fully related to His work: “For you, O LORD, have made me glad by your work; at the works of your hands I sing for joy” (Ps. 92:4).
Our joy isn’t found in how “good” we are, but in how good He is. It’s always: “But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able thus to offer willingly? For all things come from you, and of your own have we given you” (1 Chron. 29:14). Paul restated that when he wrote: “Who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid? For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen” (Rom. 11:35-36).
When He works in us “that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ” (Heb. 13:21), He will be pleased with who we are and what we do. Ezekiel stated that as follows: “And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules” (Ezek. 36:27). When God does an inward work, He will be pleased with the outward manifestation.
Peter worded that as follows: “Whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may by glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen” (1 Peter 4:11). He highlighted the crux of today’s verse. God’s glory is related to what He supplies. Any service apart from Him being the Source of it is unacceptable to Him. It must flow from the Vine in order for God to accept and delight in it.
Then will He delight in all the right sacrifices, performed by “a broken and contrite heart,” depending on Him to do good to Zion in His good pleasure, including keeping and sustaining us. Then can we say with David: “The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me; your steadfast love, O LORD, endures forever. Do not forsake the work of your hands” (Ps. 138:8).
Heavenly Father, thank You that Your steadfast love endures forever.
The Devotional Writer
P.S. Here’s one of the easiest and most profitable fundraisers for your church, ministry, Christian school, or non-profit. Anyone can do so … go to www.thecauseofchrist.com to find out!