Exhortation, Fifth Sunday in Lent
In the 16th century, Luther nailed to the door of Wittenberg the 95 theses, meant as a way of beginning a discussion concerning the abuses of the Roman Church. The very first of Luther’s propositions states that the whole of the Christian life is to be a life of repentance. Repentance is that inglorious word to the sinner’s heart, but that glorious response in the sight of God. God loves a repentant life. David knew this well; in fact, he penned the most profound song of repentance, which is Psalm 51. King David establishes for us a pattern of repentance that we are to follow in our lives. David tells us that he knows his transgressions; He knows what has offended God. He is so intimately tuned with the word of Yahweh that his heart is heavy in the presence of sin. It was so heavy that he could not bear its filth, so he prays; create in me a clean Heart, O God. The prayer of the saint is that God would renew his actions, so they would conform to the actions of His beloved Son. If our life is to be a life of repentance, we need to know the Son who died for us to make us clean. For if He had not died, Psalm 51 would meaningless. But thanks be to God, we have a redeemer of God’s elect, Christ our Lord.
Prayer: Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God,
O God of my salvation,
and my tongue will sing aloud of your righteousness.
O Lord, open my lips,
and my mouth will declare your praise.