Psalm 32

32:0David probably wrote Psalm 32 after he had slept with Bathsheba. She was the wife of Uriah. David sent Uriah to die in battle. The David married Bathsheba. For a while, he did not ask God to forgive him. As a result, he was very unhappy. Then he told God that he was sorry. God forgave him. David became happy again. Christians have a special word for being sorry for their sins. The word is repentance. There are 7 Repentance Psalms. The others are 6,38 51,102, 130 and 143.

The Hiding Place

This is a special song that David wrote.

1-2 A man is very happy when God:

· forgives his disobedience

· covers his sin

· does not put it against him when he does bad things

There is nothing false in his spirit

32:1-2Verses 1-2: Here David used 3 different words to describe disobeying God. I have translated them:

– DISOBEDIENCE, or not doing what the Bible tells us to do: this hurts God

– SIN, or doing what we want to do; often we cannot stop ourselves: this hurts God and us

– DOING BAD THINGS which means doing things that may hurt other people: it also hurts God and us

These 3 words include all the ways that we disobey God. ‘Disobey’ means ‘not obey.’ Really, David's 3 words mean the same thing; disobeying God. Christians usually call this by the word ‘sin.’ Sin is a small word with I (me) in the middle.

David then uses 3 different words for what God does;

– God FORGIVES our sin: he GIVES it to Jesus, who carries it AWAY

– God COVERS our sin: he does not punish us for doing it

– God does not PUT (or HOLD) our sin AGAINST US: he will save us from going to hell for doing it

God forgives us because he loves us. He sent his son Jesus to earth to die for us. When Jesus died, God punished Jesus instead of punishing us. ‘Punish’ means ‘hurt someone because they broke the rules.’ In this way, God covers our sin. When we die, nobody will be able to hold it against us, or use it to send us to hell. Hell is a place for punishment after people die. So, we must be like David. We must ask God to forgive us, to cover our sin and not hold it against us.

3-4 When I said nothing my bones became weak and I cried all day long.

In the day and in the night your hand was heavy on me.

I felt dried up as in the heat of summer.


5 Then I told you about my sin

and I did not hide the bad things that I had done.

I said, ‘I will show my disobedience to the Lord.’

You forgave the bad things that I had done in my disobedience.


32:5Verses 3-5: At first, David did not ask God to forgive him. He knew that he had disobeyed God. This made David very sad. But then he did ask God to forgive him and God did. God will always forgive us if we ask him. It does not matter what we have done. Remember, Psalm 32:1-2 includes ALL the ways that we do not obey God.

6 So let everyone that enjoys your kind love pray to you.

Let them do it while they can still find you.

Then the great floods of water will not come near to them.

7 You are my hiding place.

You will keep me safe from trouble.

Your songs will be all around me now that I am free.


32:7Verses 6-7: Now it is different. David did not feel God's hand ‘heavy on’ him. (verse 4) (‘heavy on me’ means that David thought that God was ‘angry with him.’) David now felt free. So he tells everybody that loves God, ‘Pray to God.’ He means ‘if you sin ask God to forgive you; do not wait until you are very sad.’ David feels that God is his hiding place. The ‘great flood of water’ means the ‘bad times.’ They will come, but will not hurt us. God will hide us and make us safe.

8 I will tell you the way,

I will teach you where you must go.

My eye will be your guide.

9 Do not be like the horse, or the mule.

They do not understand.

They need special bits in their mouths to make them obey you.

32:9Verses 8-9: These words are not David speaking to us. They are God speaking to us. It is a special promise of God. God will always show us what to do if we ask him. We must not be like animals, like the horse and the mule. We must be like people that God can talk to.

10 Bad people will be very sad.

People that trust in the Lord

will find his kind love all round them.

11 So, all you good people that have clean hearts:

· show everyone that the Lord has made you happy,

· praise him in words and in music.

32:11Verses 10-11: Though bad people will be sad, people that trust God will not be sad. The only way to be really happy is to ask God to forgive your sin. Then you will have a clean heart. Here, ‘the heart’ means the ‘real you’ inside you. ‘clean’ means God sees you as ‘if you had never disobeyed him.’