Sermon for Lenten Midweek – 3.1.23

+ 1st Lenten Midweek Service – March 1st, 2023 +

Psalm 32

Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church

Milton, WA


“Psalm 32: Sinner and Saint”


In the Name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.


When someone says there’s a a righteous man, or there’s a godly woman. What goes through our minds? Probably something like this. We think of someone who has it all together; someone better than myself, a cut above the rest perhaps.


But that’s not what the picture of a righteous person that we hear about in Psalm 32. To be sure, Psalm 32 does talk about a person who is upright in heart, godly, righteous, one in whom there is no deceit…a saint, we might say.


Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, O righteous,
    and shout for joy, all you upright in heart!


But Psalm 32 also talks about this person as one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered, who confesses their iniquity…a sinner.


Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven,
    whose sin is covered.
Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity,
    and in whose spirit there is no deceit.


Psalm 32 gives us a very different picture of a righteous person than we usually conjure up in our minds. The righteous person of Psalm 32 is both saint and a sinner.


In the Lutheran Reformation, there was a Latin phrase that conveyed this reality of Christians in this life. That while we live in this world and in our sinful flesh, we are Simul Justus Et Peccator…at the same time saints and sinners.


That is the picture of the righteous person in Psalm 32. And the righteous person of psalm 32 is you, and me, and all believers.


This completely changes and upends all our assumptions about what it means to be righteous. We tend to think righteousness is somehow, someway based on something within us: our thoughts, words, deeds; our feelings, intellect, or morality.


In Psalm 32, God says, “No, you have it all backwards. The one in whom there is no deceit isn’t the sinless one, but one who confesses their sin. The righteous person is not one who rests in their own righteousness, but in the righteousness that God declares to you in Jesus. The godly one is the one who admits that they are in fact ungodly.”

Remember the words of John’s epistle…If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. You see, the one in whom there is no deceit is the one who admits that they are in fact deceitful. According to Psalm 32, a saint, a godly, and righteous one is one who says to the Lord, “Yes, Lord, I am a sinner.”


Psalm 32, like the other penitential psalms, brings us to confess our sins. To pray the Lenten prayer, the daily prayer, “forgive us our trespasses…”


To pray, “Lord, have mercy on me a sinner.”


To pray with the Psalmist: I acknowledged my sin to you,
    and I did not cover my iniquity;
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,”

and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. 


To be righteous and godly, according to psalm 32, is to be the one God in Christ forgives. And that is you.


When we confess our sins God is faithful and just to forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. This is what he has done for you in Jesus. On the cross, Jesus took all our unrighteousness and made it his own, so that all of his righteousness is made your own. On the cross Jesus became sin so that in him we would become the righteousness of God. On the cross, Jesus the innocent one is declared guilty so that we who are guilty in sin, are declared innocent, godly, and saints in him.


Psalm 32, then, is more than a penitential psalm. It is a psalm of promise. It is the psalm that depicts our daily life in Christ, that we are sinners and saints. That to be godly is to confess that we are ungodly in and of ourselves, and that we are only godly and upright and righteous in Jesus who is our righteousness. That you are declared righteous and forgiven in Jesus


Therefore…Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, O righteous,
    and shout for joy, all you upright in heart!





Beautiful Savior

is a traditional Lutheran Church, faithful to God's Word and His Sacraments. We equip God's people to serve, love, and encourage one another as we grow in our personal relationship with Christ. We reach out to the community as beacons of light, sharing the love of God in Christ Jesus, our Savior.

Church Office Hours

Monday - Thursday 8:30am-3:30pm

Friday 8:30am-11:30am

The office is closed on Fridays during the summer months of June, July, and August.

Preschool Office Hours

August - May
Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday

By appointment only June and July


2306 Milton Way
Milton, WA 98354
(253) 922-6977
(253) 922-6977