Simply the Bible Blog

Daily Devotion and Podcast

Godly Sorrow


“And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and pleas for mercy, so that, when they look on me, on him whom they have pierced, they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for an only child, and weep bitterly over him, as one weeps over a firstborn.” (Zechariah 12:10, ESV)

This is my fifth and final post on revival. Using the future revival of Israel as our inspiration, we have looked at the purpose of revival, God’s role in it, the importance of grace, and our need to desperately cry out to God. There is one more key ingredient: godly sorrow. 

When God pours out His Spirit upon Israel, they will look on Him, the One whom they have pierced, and mourn for Him as one mourns for an only child. This calls to mind Psalm 22, the psalm Jesus quoted from the cross.

“For dogs encompass me; a company of evildoers encircles me; they have pierced my hands and feet—” (Psalm 22:16, ESV)

Yes, Israel pierced the Lord by handing Him over to Pilate to be crucified. But we have all pierced Him by our sins. We have hurt the heart of God. We have wounded Him by going our own way and ignoring His commandments. Nationally, we have plunged headlong into sin and deep spiritual darkness, yet we remain indifferent to our condition. Revival cannot come unless there is first repentance.

James puts it this way:

“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.” (James 4:8–10, NKJV)

The passage in Zechariah looks forward to a time in Israel when the entire nation will mourn for God, as one mourns over the death of an only child. Their hard hearts will be pierced resulting in godly sorrow.

But isn’t this our need today? We have hardened our hearts toward God; we have hardened them toward one another. Only a deep piercing of the heart by the sword of God’s Word can save us.

Fortunately, as we have mentioned in previous posts, God takes on this mission to change our hearts and grant us repentance. But we must respond to the leading of His Spirit.

Am I willing to be broken? Would I welcome godly sorrow that transforms? Would I be willing to weep bitterly as Peter wept when he heard the rooster crow? If not me, then who? Revival begins with one broken heart and spreads to many. May God pierce us with the truth, and from the wound bring forth rivers of life and healing.

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3 responses to “Godly Sorrow”

  1. Avatar

    Very encouraging Daryl thank you

    Sent from my iPhone


    1. Thank you, Nyck. It can be hard to let the sword of the Word truly penetrate the heart, but it is the only way to really know the joy of the Lord.

  2. Subscription by email is available from the main blog page. Thanks.

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