Although the story is not particularly enjoyable to read, every believer can indentify with David’s prayer of repentance as expressed in Psalm 51. The psalm is well loved because it reveals the hope found in God’s mercy.
The message of this psalm is that the vilest offender among God’s people can appeal to God for forgiveness, for moral restoration, and for the resumption of a joyful life of fellowship and service, if he comes with a broken spirit and bases his apeal on God’s compassion and grace.
Ross, Allen P., “Psalms” in The Bible Knowledge Commentary — Old Testament, edited by John F. Walvoord and Roy B. Zuck, (USA: SP Publications, 1989), 832.
However, we must also recognize that God’s forgiveness does not necessarily remove the effects of sin on our lives. In David’s case, he enjoyed God’s forgiveness but suffered greatly on account of his actions. We would do well to remember this.
David’s sin was heinous, but the grace of God was more than sufficient to forgive and restore him, as Nathan could testify. And yet, though David could be restored to fellowship with his God, the impact of his sin remained and would continue to work its sorrow in the nation as well as in the king’s life.
Merrill, Eugene H., “2 Samuel” in The Bible Knowledge Commentary — Old Testament, edited by John F. Walvoord and Roy B. Zuck, (USA: SP Publications, 1989), 468.