After the prophet Nathan confronts David with the reality of his sins against Bathsheba and Uriah, David says these words to the Lord in Psalm 51:
Against you, you only, have I sinned
and done what is evil in your sight
Charles Spurgeon, in his great little book, All of Grace, explains that David can say this, that his sins are against God alone, because it God alone who justifies. Our neighbor, husband, wife, or child can forgive us for sins that we commit against them, but that is not an eternal, lasting forgiveness. Between two people, forgiveness is a promise to over look an offense. But between God and man, forgiveness is God’s gracious choice to actually forget and “blot out” forever the sins that we have committed against Him. Through Jesus Christ, God treats us as if we had never sinned, so that instead of our Wrathful Judge, God becomes for us the Hiding Place of Psalm 32:7:
You are a hiding place for me;
you preserve me from trouble;
you surround me with shouts of deliverance.
There are few of us who’s sins will match those of David, and this should give us great hope. If God can, and does, forgive a murderer and adulterer, then there is hope for the rest of us if we come before God with the broken and contrite heart that He desires. We must come to God alone for the forgiveness of our sins and say to Him:
Hide your face from my sins,
and blot out all my iniquities.
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from your presence,
and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and uphold me with a willing spirit.
Then will we be justified and forgiven, and God is quick to forgive those who seek it from HIm.