Explore The Bible Study: The Confession

2:47 PM


We recently had a young man knock on our door and try to sell us a cleaning solution for removing stains. I find it interesting how much money and time we spend trying to keep everything clean - clothes, windows, cars, and our bodies, just to name a few. We have some products called "deep cleaning" solutions and people go on special diets to do a "body cleanse." We do all of this just so we can feel clean or feel better. What if cleansing was as simple as making a heartfelt confession? When it comes to sin, this is the only action that can bring the cleansing we so desperately desire. This is the focus of LifeWay's Explore the Bible Study: The Confession.

As you prepare this week, keep in mind that not everyone in your group will know the background of David's sin. Take time to review the context in order to help the group understand the full impact of David's sin on his life. The Bible study helps provides you with some background helps.

Psalm 51 Overview: Much of my teaching content was based on information I gleaned from a sermon by John MacArthur. Click here to listen to his message.

Teaching Outline Variation. The Bible study helps will follow this breakdown of the passages:
Psalm 51:1-5; Psalm 51:6-12; Psalm 51:12-19

LOOK UP (FOCUSING THE GROUP) OPTIONS. There are two options. The first option focuses on bringing in and displaying various cleaning products or supplies. The second option is the following vintage household cleaning supply commercial.



Secondary Passages. Consider assigning these or listing them in advance on the whiteboard.
  • Sin is a part of our nature - Jeremiah 17:9; Romans 3:23
  • God's faithful love and abundant compassion - Psalm 103:10; Psalm 130:3
  • Only God can bring forgiveness and restoration. No one is capable of restoring himself/herself. - Psalm 103:12; Micah 7:18-19; Psalm 86:5; 1 John 1:9
Additional Thoughts To Consider
  • While David’s heart was passionate for God (1 Samuel 16:7; Acts 13:22) it was still corrupted (Psalm 51:5). God was still working on David’s heart and David knew it. His adultery wasn’t the only issue; it was his heart – in this case, his lust that led to adultery, murder, deceit, and tragedy. When we come before God, confessing our sin, we need to understand that we are coming before a holy God who won’t be content with a superficial change.
  • Don’t get ambushed by your sinful nature. In the past, David had relied on God more than he did the armor and weapons of Saul when fighting Goliath, he had resisted the temptation to kill Saul on several occasions, he had led his men to act with integrity on multiple occasions, but when it came to lust, he was ambushed. He couldn’t blame anyone but himself. He took complete responsibility for his sins, hated the rift that it had created between him and God, and acknowledged that only God could change his heart.
  • This is the heart cry of a truly repentant man: I want to be purified; I want forgiveness; I want a clean heart; I want a steadfast heart; I want to experience your presence again; I want to rejoice again.
  • “Sin had made him dirty and he wanted to be clean. Guilt had made him sick and he wanted to be well. Disobedience had made him lonely and he wanted to reconciled. Rebellion had made him fearful and he wanted to be pardoned.” - John MacArthur
As you read and prepare, I know God will speak to you regarding your own personal struggles with sin as he did with me. I pray you will respond to God with confession, gratefulness, or both for grace and mercy given to those who follow Christ.

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