"Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a right spirit within me. Do not banish me from your presence, and don't take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me again the joy of your salvation and make me willing to obey you. Then I will teach your ways to sinners, and they will return to you." (Psalm 51:10-13)
Our primary mission as a church is to reach people with the Gospel.
Like David's prayer in Psalm 51:13, we want to teach God's ways to
sinners and see them turn to God. Jesus commands us to, "Go
therefore and make disciples of all the nations baptizing them in the
name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to
observe all that I commanded you." (Matthew 28:19-20)
As I've prayed over Psalm 51 this morning, I'm wondering if God isn't
giving us direction in terms of preparation we can make in our own lives
in order to effectively teach sinners and see them return to God.
1. Create in me a clean heart. We begin with confession. We will have a
difficult time teaching people to confess their sins if we don't make
it a regular practice.
2. Renew a right spirit within me. There is nothing sadder than a
Christian with a bad attitude. Who wants to hang around a bunch of
3. Do not banish me from your presence. We are transformed in the
presence of God. Miracles happen in the presence of God. How do we
come into the presence of God? The Bible says, "God inhabits the praise
of His people." (Psalm 22:3)
4. Don't take your Holy Spirit from me. We effectively teach and reach only in the power of the Holy Spirit.
5. Restore to me again the joy of your salvation. Joy is a fruit of the
Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23) and something the world is always looking to
find. Joy is a contentment not based on circumstance.
6. Make me willing to obey you. How can we possibly teach others to obey God if we haven't learned how to obey God?
7. Then I will teach your ways to sinners. How will they hear without a preacher?
8. They will return to you. Here is a promise! If we will practice the first 7, then we will experience the promise of #8. There's no better time to get started than right now.