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For the director of music. A psalm of David when the prophet Nathan came to him. Nathan came to him after David had committed adultery with Bathsheba.

51 God, have mercy on me
    according to your faithful love.
Because your love is so tender and kind,
    wipe out my lawless acts.
Wash away all the evil things I’ve done.
    Make me pure from my sin.

I know the lawless acts I’ve committed.
    I can’t forget my sin.
You are the one I’ve really sinned against.
    I’ve done what is evil in your sight.
So you are right when you sentence me.
    You are fair when you judge me.
I know I’ve been a sinner ever since I was born.
    I’ve been a sinner ever since my mother became pregnant with me.
I know that you wanted faithfulness even when I was in my mother’s body.
    You taught me wisdom in that secret place.

Sprinkle me with hyssop, then I will be clean.
    Wash me, then I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear you say, “Your sins are forgiven.”
    That will bring me joy and gladness.
    Let the body you have broken be glad.
Take away all my sins.
    Wipe away all the evil things I’ve done.

10 God, create a pure heart in me.
    Give me a new spirit that is faithful to you.
11 Don’t send me away from you.
    Don’t take your Holy Spirit away from me.
12 Give me back the joy that comes from being saved by you.
    Give me a spirit that obeys you so that I will keep going.

13 Then I will teach your ways to those who commit lawless acts.
    And sinners will turn back to you.
14 You are the God who saves me.
    I have committed murder.
    God, take away my guilt.
Then my tongue will sing about how right you are
    no matter what you do.
15 Lord, open my lips so that I can speak.
    Then my mouth will praise you.
16 You don’t take delight in sacrifice.
    If you did, I would bring it.
    You don’t take pleasure in burnt offerings.
17 The greatest sacrifice you want is a broken spirit.
    God, you will gladly accept a heart
    that is broken because of sadness over sin.

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