Confession Of Sin

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Confession of Sin - Why Do It?
Many of us have trouble with the concept of sin. It is difficult to accept that even when we are trying to be good, there are areas of our life that remain sinful. We may still harbor lusts, or tell lies, or make hurtful comments to others.

Hard as it is to accept our failures, it may be even harder to confess them - even privately in prayer to God. Clearly, however, that is what God requires:

"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness" (1 John 1:9).

Confession of Sin - What Does it Accomplish?
Confession of sin alone is not all that God requires. He asks that we repent, that we turn away from our sinful activities and turn instead to follow Him. Repentance can be defined as: "A turning away from sin, disobedience, or rebellion and a turning back to God. In a more general sense, repentance means a change of mind or a feeling of remorse or regret for past conduct. True repentance is a 'godly sorrow' for sin, an act of turning around and going in the opposite direction. This type of repentance leads to a fundamental change in a person's relationship to God."1

The Apostle Paul notes this in Acts 3:19-20:

"Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, and that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you - even Jesus."

Repentance doesn't mean we become perfect. God understands that even at our best, we may backslide at times. However, every time we seek His forgiveness, we will receive it.

Confession of Sin - The Outcome
There is even better news for those who have learned to confess their sins, to repent and to turn to God.

The Bible says Jesus Himself will come to our aid.

"My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense - Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world" (1 John 2:1-2).

When sins are forgiven by God, the Bible says that God does not hold those sins against us. Psalm 103:11-12 says, "For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us."

Since God forgives us, we are called to forgive others. Ephesians 4:32 says, "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you."

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