Psalms 51:1-9

For the director of music. A psalm of David. When the prophet Nathan came to him after David had committed adultery with Bathsheba.

1 [a]Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.
3 For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me.
4 Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight; so you are right in your verdict and justified when you judge.
5 Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
6 Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb; you taught me wisdom in that secret place.
7 Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
8 Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice.
9 Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity.

Psalms 51:1-9 Meaning and Commentary

Psalms 51:1-9 In-Context

1 Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.
3 For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me.
4 Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight; so you are right in your verdict and justified when you judge.
5 Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
6 Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb; you taught me wisdom in that secret place.
7 Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
8 Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice.
9 Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity.
10 Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.
13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways, so that sinners will turn back to you.

Cross References 22

  • 1. S 2 Samuel 24:14; S Psalms 9:13
  • 2. S Psalms 25:7; S Psalms 119:88
  • 3. S Nehemiah 9:27; Psalms 86:15; Isaiah 63:7
  • 4. S 2 Samuel 12:13; S 2 Chronicles 6:21; S Nehemiah 4:5; Acts 3:19
  • 5. S Psalms 39:8; Isaiah 43:25; Colossians 2:14
  • 6. S Ruth 3:3; Jeremiah 2:22; Jeremiah 13:27; Acts 22:16; 1 John 1:9
  • 7. Proverbs 20:30; Isaiah 4:4; Ezekiel 36:25; Zechariah 13:1; Matthew 23:25-26; Hebrews 9:14
  • 8. Isaiah 59:12
  • 9. S 1 Samuel 15:24
  • 10. S Genesis 20:6; Luke 15:21
  • 11. Romans 3:4*
  • 12. S Leviticus 5:2; Job 14:4
  • 13. S Job 5:7
  • 14. Psalms 119:66; Psalms 143:10; Proverbs 2:6
  • 15. S Job 9:4; S Job 34:32; Psalms 15:2
  • 16. Isaiah 4:4; Ezekiel 36:25; Zechariah 13:1
  • 17. S Exodus 12:22; Leviticus 14:4; S Numbers 19:6; Hebrews 9:19
  • 18. Isaiah 1:18; Isaiah 43:25; Isaiah 44:22
  • 19. Isaiah 35:10; Jeremiah 33:11; Joel 1:16
  • 20. S Exodus 12:46
  • 21. Jeremiah 16:17; Zechariah 4:10
  • 22. S 2 Samuel 12:13

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. In Hebrew texts 51:1-19 is numbered 51:3-21.
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