Forgiveness Brings Happiness
March 12, 2011 § 1 Comment
“Blessed is he whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered” (Psalm 32:1). Psalm 32 is one of the seven so-called “penitential” psalms which are often read during the season of Lent. It highlights themes of sin, confession, and redemption. Psalm 32 is specifically focusing on the result of forgiveness. Forgiveness brings physical and spiritual relief. The two opening verses describe this result as happiness. As such, it recalls the happiness phrases of Psalms 1 & 2 which introduce the entire Book of Psalms. J. Clinton McCann describes this relationship with the first two Psalms as follows: “By defining happiness in terms of forgiveness, Psalm 32 functions as an important check against any tendency to misunderstand Psalm 1. That is, to be righteous is not a matter of being sinless but a matter of being forgiven, of being open to God’s instruction (Psalm 1:2; see 32:8-9), and of trusting God rather than self (verse 10; see Psalm 2:12).” As Psalm 51:17 also states, what God asks of us, is a broken spirit. God has forgiven us, and by doing so, grant us happiness. Can you and I embrace that happiness in our lives by forgiving ourselves and others?