The Hope of a Joy Restored


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Restore to me the joy of Your salvation,

and uphold me by Your generous Spirit.

- Psalm 51:12(NKJV).

Sometimes when we look at our lives, all we see is our sin and mistakes. Although Jesus’s death on the cross bought our forgiveness, we still often choose to do what is wrong. Whenever we fall back into sin, satan wants us to remain entangled in shame and guilt. He does not want us to remember how gracious and loving God is.

But we have hope because of Jesus Christ.

Jesus came to forgive our worst transgressions. Our sin is the reason why we need Jesus’s salvation.

The beginning of Matthew 1 lists the genealogy of Jesus Christ. The verses trace Jesus’s family back to David, the famous king of Israel. Matthew 1:6b says, “David the king begot Solomon by her who had been the wife of Uriah” (NKJV). This short comment references David’s most shameful sin: his adultery with Bathsheba.

During his long lifetime, David was many things. He was a young boy who stepped out in faith to face down giants. He was a shepherd who wrote songs and prayers about God’s goodness. He was a hunted man who ran from the death threats of a paranoid king. He was a chosen king who served God faithfully for decades.

But when David committed adultery with Bathsheba, he allowed his lust and pride to turn his heart away from righteousness. The sin that David committed was great, and resulted in the death of an honorable man.

But I believe that this comment in Matthew was not meant to broadcast David’s sin but to serve as a testament of God’s grace.

David recognized the wickedness of his ways, and he did not attempt to excuse his sin or downplay the seriousness of his error. Instead, he turned to God and cried out for forgiveness. Psalm 51 records this prayer of repentance.

David prays, “Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Make me hear joy and gladness, that the bones You have broken may rejoice” (NKJV). Not only is David asking for complete and total forgiveness, but he is also asking God to restore his joy. In verse 12, David says, “Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and uphold me by Your generous Spirit” (NKJV).

And God answered his prayer.

Although the consequences remained, David was forgiven. Through redemption’s love, his joy was restored. Despite David’s brokenness, God planted a seed of hope through his lineage.

Centuries later, through the line of King David and his son Solomon, the Savior of the world was born. Jesus Christ came not to condemn, but to free His people from their sin. Matthew 1:21b says, “Call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sin” (NKJV). Jesus represents the hope and grace of God’s forgiveness.

God desires honesty and holiness in us, but when we sin against Him, He does not give up on us. He demonstrates His love for us by convicting us of our sin and by offering us forgiveness.

And through genuine repentance, we, like David, can turn from our sin and serve God again. Through God’s forgiveness and mercy, we can reencounter true joy and hope.

Reflection

1. Do you wonder if your sin is too great for God’s grace?

2. Have you asked God to forgive you and restore your joy?

Prayer

Abba Father, forgive us when we fall. I pray that we would not allow sin to steal our joy. Create in us a new heart that we may serve You faithfully.

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