Blessed are They Who Mourn (Psalm 6)

Today’s post is from A Meditative Journey Through the Psalms by Timothy and Julie Tennent. He serves as the president of Asbury Theological Seminary among other posts he holds across the global church. She is a gifted musician and was one of the driving forces that helped bring to fruition the Seedbed hymnal, Our Great Redeemer’s Praise. We will share some of their writing on the Psalms over the next few Sundays. NOTE: there will not be an audio version for these entries.

Psalm 6 (NIV)

Lord, do not rebuke me in your anger
    or discipline me in your wrath.
Have mercy on me, Lord, for I am faint;
    heal me, Lord, for my bones are in agony.
My soul is in deep anguish.
    How long, Lord, how long?

Turn, Lord, and deliver me;
    save me because of your unfailing love.
Among the dead no one proclaims your name.
    Who praises you from the grave?

I am worn out from my groaning.

All night long I flood my bed with weeping
    and drench my couch with tears.
My eyes grow weak with sorrow;
    they fail because of all my foes.

Away from me, all you who do evil,
    for the Lord has heard my weeping.
The Lord has heard my cry for mercy;
    the Lord accepts my prayer.
10 All my enemies will be overwhelmed with shame and anguish;
    they will turn back and suddenly be put to shame.


Psalm 6 is the first of seven psalms which the church has traditionally named as the Penitential Psalms (Psalms 6, 32, 38, 51, 102, 130, and 143). These seven psalms reflect a whole range of ways we repent before God, including personal repentance, national repentance, awareness of sin in the people of God, as well as deep reflection on the general fallen state of the world. Psalm 6 expresses the deep agony and anguish over sin. The psalmist weeps over his sins, saying, “I am worn out from groaning; all night long I flood my bed with weeping and drench my couch with tears” (v. 6). God’s anger against sin is deep and palpable in this psalm. God’s anger is real precisely because he takes sin so seriously and he knows even more than we do how it thwarts his divine purpose in our lives. Sins are not mere mistakes. Whether we realize it or not, sin is the stubborn alignment of our lives with the whole cosmic rejection of God. Yet, through the gospel, we know that God’s no to sin, upon reflection, is God’s deeper yes to us because his wrath is rooted in his “unfailing love” (v. 4). God’s faithfulness to his covenant calls him to oppose us in our sin so that we might be restored to our proper inheritance as God’s people, the redeemed sons and daughters of the living God. As Christians, we know that God’s greatest no to sin—i.e., his greatest judgment against sin—came on the cross, where Christ bore our sins. Sin can never be viewed lightly in the face of Jesus Christ on the cross. Yet, this is also why Paul can so confidently declare that “no matter how many promises God has made, they are ‘Yes’ in Christ” (2 Cor. 1:20). Even the promise of God’s judgment becomes God’s yes in Jesus Christ. To mourn over our sins and repent of them is to align ourselves anew with God’s great promise in Jesus Christ.

For the Awakening,
Timothy and Julie Tennent


Sing Psalm 6 with the Seedbed Psalter today! Visit the free resource here or purchase the book A Metrical Psalter: The Book of Psalms Set to Meter for Singing here.

P. S. 

Several years ago we published a book called A Meditative Journey Through the Psalms by Timothy and Julie Tennent. Find today’s entry and writing on the rest of the Psalms in this beautiful resource. Order a copy of A Meditative Journey Through the Psalms from our store here.

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WHAT IS THIS? Wake-Up Call is a daily encouragement to shake off the slumber of our busy lives and turn our eyes toward Jesus. Each morning our community gathers around a Scripture, a reflection, a prayer, and a few short questions, inviting us to reorient our lives around the love of Jesus that transforms our hearts, homes, churches, and cities.

Comments and Discussion

2 Responses

  1. Pride Never Does Some Things

    Pride never weeps for mercy. It blames others and pompously justifies itself. It scorns those who mourn and calls them weak.

    Pride never pleads with tears for deliverance flooding itself with weeping. It denies its wrongdoing, its misery and its insecurity. Pride never wears itself out with groaning, grows weak with sorrow, or humbly admits to agony and anguish over its own wickedness. It refuses to separate itself from evil. (See Psalm 6.)

    Pride never asks for forgiveness. Brokenness does; it’s a pride-buster! Poverty of spirit has no hope but God. It mourns with meekness, hungers and thirsts for righteousness, and continually gives in to the present and active kingdom, government, and control of the living “Christ in you, the hope of glory.”

    Until pride is cast aside, humans will be trapped in the riptide of evil. They will forever hide inside themselves and never surrender to the glorious love and liberty of God’s presence and light. They won’t deny self-focus, take up their cross, or obey their conscience and the inner nudgings of Christ speaking within them.

    Christianity isn’t about how much Bible info you know. It’s about how freely you flow with God’s Spirit and humbly obey His promptings. (Instead of encouraging people to obey the inner leadings of God’s Spirit churches prefer a planned and programmed presentation.) The more you humbly focus your attention on the risen Jesus, the more you will be aware of His presence and His nudgings. Listen to and obey Christ’s still, small voice right now. Let it override your pride.

  2. Steve, your comment on Pride is excellent and in the Spirit of Christ. I have lived out what you said throughout your reply. The first two sentences and others describe my Pride that led me to end a marriage. After later realizing my sin and becoming the mourner in Psalm 6, the third sentence describes my former spouse who tells others of my weakness. The best part of Psalm 6 is that the Lord hears the cry for redemption and accepts the prayer. As you concluded, humbly focusing less on self and more on Jesus puts Pride to shame.

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