We have been using David as an example of someone fighting discouragement and maybe also that what we call depression today. The word depression does not exist in the Bible, but there are many examples of people fighting fear, anxiety and great discouragement. David is one of them.
In the well known Psalm 32 David is fighting guilt, another feeling that are paining many people and that are causing Christian depression today. People feel stress, condemnation, fear and other things.
David describes His very feelings during the time he was convicted of his sin. It is a strong description I think many of us know from our own lives. He felt Gods hand heavy upon him, believing that God was judging him. He felt like he had no power left and he was really suffering under the mental pain called guilt. For many Christians depression can be caused by that same feeling of guilt.
Read the psalm:
A Psalm of David, Maschil. Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.
Blessed is the man unto whom the LORD imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile. When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long.
For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer. Selah. I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the LORD; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah.
For this shall every one that is godly pray unto thee in a time when thou mayest be found: surely in the floods of great waters they shall not come nigh unto him.
Thou art my hiding place; thou shalt preserve me from trouble; thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance. Selah. I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye. Be ye not as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding: whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, lest they come near unto thee.
Many sorrows shall be to the wicked: but he that trusteth in the LORD, mercy shall compass him about. Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart.
(Psa 32:1-11 KJV)
The only thing that helped David in this hard situation was to confess his sin and not hide his mistake. When he did that he immediately knew God forgave him for everything and he became free from depression and guilt!
David lived under the old covenant and still he reaped the benefit of being forgiven by God. How much more we that now live in the New Covenant. According to the New Testament Jesus has taken all our mistakes and sins on himself, and if you and I believe in Him we are made free from sin! Any kind of what we might call Christian depression has it’s solution here; in the fact that Jesus took all our sins, all our sicknesses and all kinds of pain on himself in order for us to be free!
There is no longer any condemnation in Christ Jesus. That means that if you have sinned – that sin is taken care of by Jesus! Nothing has the right to accuse you any longer. The devil is going to try to condemn you and put you under the same pressure as David, but you are free! Even David got free from his guilt – you also must take a step out in freedom. Do not stay under the yoke of guilt! The key is to believe the word that you are free from sin!
Feeling guilty is a big cause of Christian depression. It can be that you feel guilt and condemnation for something you have actually done, but many also feel condemned for things they haven’t done! They carry a burden of not being good enough, never feeling that God is pleased with them etc. This feeling of guilt can be subtle, covered by religious unspoken rules.
But as a Christian you are free! Jesus took all your sins. No matter how”big” your sin seems to be, you have to receive your forgiveness and go on!
David rejoiced in the Lord when he understood that he was forgiven! He declared that the Lord protected him instead of punishing him.