The Book of Psalms Bible Study Psalm 32

Psalm 32

The inscription gives us no surprises as to who the author of this Psalm is – David. It does however allude to the fact that this is a unique type of Psalm. The NKJV chooses to use the word “contemplation” – it is a psalm that imparts wisdom to us – it helps us to learn in order to become wiser (The inscription is usually verse 1 in the Hebrew Bible). 

v1: “Blessed”/happy is the same word that we find in the beatitudes (Matt 5). It’s a word of rejoicing as it shows that G-d is at work in a person’s life. The way that G-d is working in David’s life here is by taking away his transgressions/sins/forgiving him. It is only through the work of Yeshua (purchased by His blood) on the cross that our sins can be totally removed from us. This should be a cause of blessing and great rejoicing for us. 

v2: Blessed – repeated, therefore emphasised. 

  • Impute – an accounting term. To assign a value to something. In Gen 15:6 we see the same word (although with a positive connotation) used in regard to Abraham receiving a credit, G-d accounting his belief to him as righteousness. When we have faith it is credited to us as righteousness. As believers our sins aren’t credited to us. G-d doesn’t count them into our “balance sheet”.
  • No guile – ie no deceit. Hebrew parallelism links iniquity with speaking deceitfully. Every time that we speak or behave in a deceitful way it is going to produce iniquity in us. 
  • When G-d moves in order to not allow iniquity to have its purpose in our lives then we will not be people who practise deceit, but we will be upright people. 

v3: Kept silent – unwilling to confess sins, not willing to acknowledge guilt before G-d. 

  • Bones, Biblically, are oftentimes related to stability. They are the foundation of the body. When we are unwilling to confess our sins we begin to experience instability in our lives. We become weaker. Our foundation becomes unsure. Why? Because we are rejecting truth. Sin weakens us. Not confessing weakens us even more. 
  • Groaning here is elsewhere interpreted “roaring” (like a lion). These are not quiet, conservative groans but are loud noises. Lions often roar in order to bring about a change in their situation. When we do not acknowledge our sins change does not come. 

v4: When we are in a covenantal relationship with G-d but aren’t living in full truth and disclosure G-d’s hand feels heavy on us. 

  • Vitality – the word in Hebrew used here is the word for moisture (eg in modern day terms this would be like David saying he feels like a rag that has been completely wrung out. He is exhausted, fatigued, strength has drained away, been sapped) Water/moisture is related to blessing Scripturally. David feels like he is in a drought as far as blessing is concerned. When we do not confess our sins to G-d we are like a flower that begins to fade away – edging closer and closer to death. 

v5: In this verse we see a change. David undergoes a transformation. Instead of hiding and concealing his sin from G-d he opens it up to G-d. 

  • “My sin” – David has evaluated himself against the commandments of G-d, and he has taken ownership of what he has done wrong. 
  • When we confess our sins G-d is willing and able to forgive (1 John 1:9)

v6: David is wise as he submits to the standards of the L-rd. He confesses – which is exactly what G-d requires of him in this situation. 

  • G-dly – those who have received the grace of G-d. G-dly people are able to acknowledge their sin and not conceal it. G-dly people are people of truth. 
  • In a time when You may be found – at a time when G-d is available to us – ie right now. Do not ignore the moving of the Holy Spirit in your life. When He prompts you act quickly. 
  • When G-ds judgement comes like a flood these judgements will not come near the G-dly man who has confessed all to G-d. We escape judgement when we live according to G-d’s standards. 

v7: These are wonderful blessings that come from acknowledging our sin.

  • We spoke about being hidden yesterday. This promise is repeated here. 
  • Preserve is a word of guarding, a word of taking care of.
  • Those who are witnesses of G-d’s faithfulness will be singing these songs of deliverance. Our lives are a testimony. People are watching. 

v8: Because G-d has worked mightily in David’s life he can share with others. David is now able to instruct, teach and guide others. What David is doing here is getting involved in other people’s lives. He is utilising the truth that G-d has revealed to him (by His working in David’s life). If we have received the grace of G-d we don’t use it as a license to sin, but grace enables us to turn away from sin and embrace a life of righteousness. 

  • Guide you with my eye – David counsels others so that they can see things from the same perspective that David (who has now obtained G-d’s perspective on certain areas of his life) has. 

v9: Left to himself this horse/mule would go in the wrong direction. We must not be like that. A horse has to be dominated. We are either going to be people who are willingly submissive and choose the things of G-d, or we are going to be like this horse who needs a heavy hand to make it go in the right direction. If they refuse G-d’s hand it will be the hand of others who will exploit and manipulate them to go the wrong way for someone else’s benefit.. 

v10: Wicked and righteous are contrasted. 

v11: Once again we see that grace (mercy) leads to wonderful outcomes for those who are in a covenantal relationship with G-d. 

  • “In the L-rd” – a New Testament concept laid out here (Eph 2:6 etc). Those who are righteous, who ‘produce fruit in keeping with repentance’ (Matt 3:8), are going to be those who rejoice. Those who are ‘in the L-rd’ are called righteous.
  • A ‘shout’ is associated with excitement, confidence, an outburst. Those who are upright (righteous) know what G-d has done in their lives and this causes them great joy. 

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