Have mercy upon me, O God,
According to Your lovingkindness;
According to the multitude of Your tender mercies,
Blot out my transgressions.
David is crying out to the Lord for mercy, we have all been there. He knew that his only hope was the undeserved favor of God, actually that is always our only hope. This is an amazing verse of scripture, David appeals to God’s mercy using three different hebrew words (see the previous two devotions). The phrase translated “tender mercies” is the most powerful of all. This word is racham and is connected to God’s eternal love for us, a love that existed before we were born. Strong’s word dictionary brings out the subtle beauty of this verse.
“racham * rakh’-am – compassion (in the plural); by extension the womb (as cherishing the foetus); by implication a maiden”
David is describing a love comparable to a mother’s love for her child, a love that began as the mom carried her child in her womb for nine months. What an incredible picture, He has loved us from our mother’s womb, this kind of love has no bounds. This description of the matriarchal bond of love describes the most powerful human relationship imaginable, the physical and emotional bond between a mother and a child. How far would a mom go to help her child in trouble, what obstacle would keep her from her liitle one in his time of need? Nothing, a mom would give her everything to take care of her child. This love just begins to portray the powerful love the Lord has for His children. David used this terminology to show us the depths of our Father’s love for us.
In this portrayal of His love, we begin to see the eternal nature of our Father’s love for us. Before we did anything, before we were even conceived, He loved us. This is the kind of tender mercy that carried David in his darkest hour. He had sinned, The Lord seemed far, far away, but David remembered this “racham”. He remembered the love of God that had no conditions, the love that called him from his youth could bring him back to that place of intimacy. Not only could he be forgiven, he could be restored.
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
Do not cast me away from Your presence,
And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of Your salvation,
And uphold me by Your generous Spirit.