David accepted God’s punishment, but he begged God not to discipline him in anger. Jeremiah also asked God to correct him gently and not in anger (Jeremiah 10:24). David recognized that if God treated him with justice alone and not with mercy, he would be wiped out by God’s wrath. Often we want God to show mercy to us and justice to everyone else. God in his kindness forgives us instead of giving us what we deserve.
(Source: Life Application Bible)
1 For the director of music. With stringed instruments. According to sheminith. A psalm of David. O LORD, do not rebuke me in your anger or discipline me in your wrath.
2 Be merciful to me, LORD, for I am faint; O LORD, heal me, for my bones are in agony.
3 My soul is in anguish. How long, O LORD, how long?
4 Turn, O LORD, and deliver me; save me because of your unfailing love.
5 No one remembers you when he is dead. Who praises you from the grave ?
6 I am worn out from groaning; all night long I flood my bed with weeping and drench my couch with tears.
7 My eyes grow weak with sorrow; they fail because of all my foes.
8 Away from me, all you who do evil, for the LORD has heard my weeping.
9 The LORD has heard my cry for mercy; the LORD accepts my prayer.
10 All my enemies will be ashamed and dismayed; they will turn back in sudden disgrace.