In Psalm 51, as he laments and repents of his adultery with Bathsheba and his murder of Uriah, David confesses at least five ways that his sin is extremely serious.

1. He says that he can’t get the sin out of his mind.

It is blazoned on his conscience. Verse 3:

For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.

Ever before him. The tape keeps playing. And he can’t stop it.

2. He says that his exceeding sinfulness is only against God.

Nathan had said David despised Godand scorned his word. So David says in verse 4,

Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight.

This doesn’t mean Bathsheba and Uriah and the baby weren’t hurt. It means that what makes sin sin is that it is against God. Hurting man is bad. It is horribly bad. But that’s not the horror of sin. Sin is an attack on God—a belittling of God. David admits this in striking terms: “Against you, you only, have I sinned.”

Written by John Piper
Read more at Desiring God

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