Though you will not notice it in your English Bibles, Psalm 25 is in the form of an acrostic, with each line of the poem beginning with a successive letter of the Hebrew alphabet. Psalms 9 and 10, if combined, would give us the first acrostic Psalm in the book, otherwise, this is the first one.
The Psalm touches all the bases of a prayer:
The writer bases his prayer on what he knows of God: He is merciful and loving, good, upright and faithful. Because this is who God is, the Psalmist is confident of God’s forgiveness (even though his sins are great). Forgiveness is important because the writer finds himself in dire straits and, as he proclaims, God is his only hope.
There are two things that stand out to me about this Psalm:
First, the need for God’s instruction. Only God can teach the way of God, and since protection and blessing depends on walking in His way, the writer’s future is dependent on God telling Him how to live. Of course, it’s also dependent on the Psalmist listening to God, but the writer professes before the Lord his willingness to watch and listen.
Second is the confidence in God’s response. God will respond because this is the kind of God He is. His reputation (name) is staked on His nature, which is only seen in action on behalf of his people. Perhaps that is why, at the end of a very personal prayer, the writer includes a request for all Israel.
The world is a dangerous wilderness, and God is our only guide through it to safety. Our eyes must always be on Him (vs. 15).