Psalm 51
Contemporary English Version

(For the music leader. A psalm by David when the prophet Nathan came to him after David had been with Bathsheba.)

A Prayer for Forgiveness

1 You are kind, God!

Please have pity on me.

You are always merciful!

Please wipe away my sins.

2Wash me clean from all

of my sin and guilt.

3I know about my sins,

and I cannot forget

the burden of my guilt.

4 You are really the one

I have sinned against;

I have disobeyed you

and have done wrong.

So it is right and fair for you

to correct and punish me.

5I have sinned and done wrong

since the day I was born.

6But you want complete honesty,

so teach me true wisdom.

7Wash me with hyssop+

until I am clean

and whiter than snow.

8Let me be happy and joyful!

You crushed my bones,

now let them celebrate.

9Turn your eyes from my sin

and cover my guilt.

10Create pure thoughts in me

and make me faithful again.

11Don't chase me away from you

or take your Holy Spirit

away from me.

12Make me as happy as you did

when you saved me;

make me want to obey!

13I will teach sinners your Law,

and they will return to you.

14Keep me from any deadly sin.

Only you can save me!

Then I will shout and sing

about your power to save.

15Help me to speak,

and I will praise you, Lord.

16Offerings and sacrifices

are not what you want.

17The way to please you

is to be truly sorry

deep in our hearts.

This is the kind of sacrifice

you won't refuse.

18Please be willing, Lord,

to help the city of Zion

and to rebuild its walls.

19Then you will be pleased

with the proper sacrifices,

and we will offer bulls

on your altar once again.


51.7 hyssop: A small bush with bunches of small, white flowers. It was sometimes used as a symbol for making a person clean from sin.

Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)

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