A Model for Confession (Psalm 51)

Summary: When we sin, we need to confess our sins to God because all sin is ultimately committed against God. There is no excuse that relieves us of our responsibility in our sin, so we ultimately can only appeal to God mercy in genuine confession and repentance.

Open (5 min)

1. Have you ever gotten caught with your hand in the cookie jar so to speak? What happened?

Dig (20-25 min)

2. How does hearing David's confession that he only sinned against God make you feel? Why?

3. What does this statement reveal about the nature of sin against another person?

4. Why do you suppose David does not mention any extenuating circumstances that might have caused him to sin, such as Bathsheba bathing where he could observe her? Would it have made a difference if David had? Why?

5. Why does David not feel moved to offer a sacrifice to God even though the Torah specifically instructed a sin offering when someone sins?

6. If God does not delight in sacrifice, why did he command it? What does God delight in?

7. What does David want in this prayer? How can he get it?

Apply (20-25 min)

8. What are some reasons people do not confess their sins?

9. Compare how we today react to sin and the way David reacts to sin. What is the same? What is different?

10. How do you need to change your attitude toward your own sin and God's gift of forgiveness?

11. How can you cultivate a broken heart and a contrite spirit before God when you sin?

12. As a church, do we need to spend more time in the prayer of confession? Why or why not?


Don't forget the empty chair