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For the choir director; a psalm by David when the prophet Nathan came to him after David’s adultery with Bathsheba.

51 Have pity on me, O God, in keeping with your mercy.
In keeping with your unlimited compassion, wipe out my rebellious acts.
Wash me thoroughly from my guilt,
and cleanse me from my sin.
I admit that I am rebellious.
My sin is always in front of me.
I have sinned against you, especially you.
I have done what you consider evil.
So you hand down justice when you speak,
and you are blameless when you judge.

Indeed, I was born guilty.
I was a sinner when my mother conceived me.
Yet, you desire truth and sincerity.
Deep down inside me you teach me wisdom.
Purify me from sin with hyssop,[a] and I will be clean.[b]
Wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear ⌞sounds of⌟ joy and gladness.
Let the bones that you have broken dance.
Hide your face from my sins,
and wipe out all that I have done wrong.

10 Create a clean heart in me, O God,
and renew a faithful spirit within me.
11 Do not force me away from your presence,
and do not take your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore the joy of your salvation to me,
and provide me with a spirit of willing obedience.

13 ⌞Then⌟ I will teach your ways to those who are rebellious,
and sinners will return to you.
14 Rescue me from the guilt of murder,
O God, my savior.
Let my tongue sing joyfully about your righteousness!
15 O Lord, open my lips,
and my mouth will tell about your praise.
16 You are not happy with any sacrifice.
Otherwise, I would offer one ⌞to you⌟.
You are not pleased with burnt offerings.
17 The sacrifice pleasing to God is a broken spirit.
O God, you do not despise a broken and sorrowful heart.
18 Favor Zion with your goodness.
Rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.
19 Then you will be pleased with sacrifices offered in the right spirit—
with burnt offerings and whole burnt offerings.
Young bulls will be offered on your altar.


  1. 51:7 Branches from the hyssop   plant were used in purification rites.
  2. 51:7 Clean   ” refers to anything that Moses’ Teachings say is presentable to God.

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