The Goodness of the Lord

Peter Barnes: Psalm25:8-15 NO AUDIO

(5 May 2019)


David begins this acrostic Psalm with a prayer for vindication (25:1-3), guidance (25:4-5), and forgiveness (25:6-7). In the next section, from verses 8-15, David mixes his prayer with a number of affirmations about the attributes and ways of God.

1. The attributes of God.

– 25:8. Alec Motyer comments of ‘a very remarkable “therefore”’. If God is good and upright, then He ought to punish sinners.

– He is the God of the covenant. God’s goodness requires that He keep His covenant promises. David writes this when he is in trouble; he is under attack – 25:1-3.

– 25:10. Luther calls this ‘a most beautiful verse’.

2. The ways of God.

(a) He instructs and leads sinners – 25:8-9, 12, 14.

(b) He pardons sinners – 25:11. Calvin says this should be the first thing in every prayer, although the Bible does not always follow that. David does not minimise his sin. Always maximise God’s grace.

(c) He rescues His people – 25:15. God promises to the believer in 25:13.

3. The character of the people of God.

– sinners who need forgiveness – 25:8, 11; the humble – 25:9; they keep the covenant of God and His testimonies – 25:10; fear God – 25:12. This has promises attached to it – 25:14. The ESV refers to the ‘friendship’, and so does Peter Craigie, but Alec Motyer has ‘fellowship’. Other translations favour ‘secret’ or ‘counsel’.