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A Prayer of Repentance


A Biblical Prayer of Repentance

I read this prayer in Daniel 9:4-19 recently and thought it encapsulated what repentance means and what such a prayer would look like.  I have changed the wording and edited it to make it personal and more contemporary.  Daniel prayed this prayer on behalf of Israel when she was in a real mess after God had judged His people.

Maybe you will see yourself in these words and the need to cry out to God in such a prayer.

If you don’t see yourself in this prayer, then you haven’t looked deep enough, for the pit is deep, the stench is horrifying, and it is covered over with false pride and inflated ego.  May God rip the facade off so you can see who you really are before Him Who is holy and pure and righteous.

I will pray to the Lord my God and confess and say,

“Alas, O Lord, the great and awesome God, Who keeps Your promises and lovingkindness for those who love You and keep Your commandments, I have sinned, committed injustice, acted wickedly and rebelled, even turning aside from Your commandments and laws.  Moreover, I have not listened to Your Word.  

Righteousness belongs to You, O Lord, but to me open shame, because of my unfaithful deeds which I have committed against You.   Open shame belongs to me, O Lord, because I have sinned against You.  To You, the Lord my God, belong compassion and forgiveness, for I have rebelled against You;  nor have I obeyed Your voice, the Lord my God, to walk in Your teachings which You set before me through Your Word.   I have transgressed Your law and turned aside, not obeying Your voice; so hardship has been poured on me for I have sinned against You.

Thus You have confirmed Your words which You had spoken against me to bring on me great hardship.   All this has come on me; yet I have not sought Your favor, the Lord my God, by turning from my sinful life and giving attention to Your truth.  Therefore You the Lord has kept the adversity in store and brought it on me; for You, the Lord my God, are righteous with respect to all Your deeds which You have done, but I have not obeyed Your voice.

And now, O Lord my God, Who have brought many out of the bondage of sin with a mighty hand and have made a name for Yourself, I have sinned, I have been wicked. O Lord, in accordance with all Your righteous acts, let now Your anger and Your wrath turn away from me; for because of my sins, I have become a reproach and embarrassment to all those around me.  

 So now, my God, listen to the prayer of Your servant and to my supplications, and for Your sake, O Lord, let Your face shine on Your desolate child.  

O my God, incline Your ear and hear! Open Your eyes and see my misery and loneliness; for I am not presenting my requests before You on account of any merits of my own, but on account of Your great compassion.  

O Lord, hear! O Lord, forgive! O Lord, listen and take action! For Your own sake, O my God, do not delay, for I have been called by Your name.”


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