This is one of what are called the “enthronement psalms”. These place God in a kingly role far and above earthly kings, powerful over all earthly rulers. According to the psalmist, the appropriate response to this is unreserved praise and such a strong feeling of awe that it leaves you feeling shaky. In recalling the story of God’s interaction with Moses, Aaron, and Samuel, we are reminded that we, too, have a part in the story of God’s people. In the same way none of these men got it right all the time, neither will we. But that didn’t keep them from calling on the name of the Lord.
They knew it was in God’s nature to forgive, but there was an accountability piece to it too. I don’t subscribe to the idea that God doles out punishment for our sin. Like a good parent, though, God does allow us to experience the consequence of our choices. If God prevented any negative outcomes of our bad behavior, there would be no learning, no growth, and little appreciation for the joy that comes with a fresh start and second chance. There would be no understanding that living in harmony with God’s will for the world lends itself to a sense of peace and balance and being grounded.
Offer a prayer of confession, and marvel at the enormity of what God can and will forgive.