What if God Kept Records, Psalm 130Author: Bobby Valentine | Filed under: Christian hope, Grace, Hebrew Bible, Ministry, Prayer, Preaching, Psalms
Ours is record keeping society. Paperwork must be created and kept on everything from purchasing tooth picks to credit card receipts. When we need to buy a new washing machine, we must fill out paperwork on our whole family history. Then that company will check with another company to find out even more records. They contact Equifax and get a copy of our records to see if we are worthy of doing business with. They look for the slightest blemish on our record then turn us down for credit they previously claimed to have “pre-approved” us for!
Companies keep records on customers. Husbands keep records on wives. Wives keep records on children and husbands. Teachers keep records on students. Police keep records on suspected criminals. Each of these parties habitually evaluates interaction with each other on the basis of that record. It cannot be escaped!
But I DISPISE MY RECORD! My record is used as a weapon against my life. People pull my record up on a computer or in their mind and tell me I’m not good enough to do business with or to be friends with or to serve the church with or . . . [fill in the blank]
Sometimes we even believe God keeps records. Surely he does — he is the universe’s best CEO. The world tells me he does. Many churches tell me he does. Satan declares that he does.
Oh, How I long to be free of the shackle of my record.
The Psalmist had similar feelings. Perhaps she was burned a time or two by her record also. The Psalmist, nor I, can blame her record on anyone but herself — we wrote it! But just once in her life she wishes for the unthinkable — life without a record. What a dream!
The voice of Scripture has a message of Good News for the Psalmist, for me, and perhaps even for you. Listen to the Psalmist in one of my favorite passages in the Bible. Listen as she (or he) cries out of the depths:
“If you, O LORD, kept a RECORD of sins, O LORD, who could stand?” (Psalm130.3).
Not a single person from Adam, Abraham, Moses, Mary, John the Baptist, Peter, Paul, you or I would have a record fit to do business with. But the Psalmist says something incredible, even unbelievable:
“But with you there is forgiveness” (Psalm 130.4).
What? No Records? Forgiveness instead of records? Too good to be true? Paul, a man with a rather large record, exclaims:
“Blessed is the man who sin the Lord will NEVER count against him” (Romans 4.8).
That is the Good News of Psalm 130. That is the Gospel (Good News) of the Cross that God does not keep a record of our sin. No record can be held against us. WOW! What can we say about such a gift? All we can do is praise the Lord of all grace and forget the records we have kept on others.