Psalm 51:11 – Do not cast me away from Your presence and do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.

Psalm 51 is one of the most hopeful and encouraging passages of Scripture. David, out of his own sin and brokenness, reveals what a truly repentant heart looks like. Beginning in verse 5, David identifies the root of our human problem. “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity; and in sin my mother conceived me.”

Many times, people are convicted over a sin, but do not identify the root of the issue as David has done. Our basic nature is one of lawlessness, which is the meaning of “iniquity.” The reason the Law of God, which is perfect, could not save us is in the “weakness of our flesh” (Romans 8:3).

David confessed to God that his conception was rooted in sin. His appeal to God was the full recognition of his absolute depraved condition. One cannot express more sincere humility than the position David took in this Psalm. David appealed to God in verse 11, asking “not to be cast away from God’s presence.” He knows the only real thing that matters is a life lived in the presence of God. David also understood that this life is a life lived in the Spirit: “Do not take your Holy Spirit from me.” David knows that he is in danger of losing that presence and favor of God because of his sin. This is why David was a man after God’s own heart (1 Samuel 13:14). He recognized his absolute lost condition without God and his absolute dependence upon God.

When one comes to Christ, one needs to take the same posture as David in recognizing their true condition. A true confession of our need of Christ must contain these two components: recognition of my utter depravity and my desperate need for God’s Holy Spirit. A shallow confession of faith will lead to a life full of challenges and frustration, because it is not wholly dependent upon God’s Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit led Christ to the cross. He is also leading us to our own personal cross of self-sacrifice and surrender to the Father’s will.

Today, ask the Lord to reveal your true depraved condition and to give you a desire for an absolute dependence upon His Holy Spirit. Ask for the grace to freely take up your cross and follow Him.