Episode 191: Confession is good for you

May 22, 2024Dave Lambert
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The late pastor and teacher Ern Baxter once published a small book, The Beginnings of the Christian Life, which is now out of print. I used it for many years as a text for a course on the six elementary Christian principles enumerated in Hebrews 6: repentance from dead works, faith toward God, instruction on baptisms, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. A phrase from this book has stayed with me for more than forty years: "The essential principle of sin is selfishness." The Bible has a lot to say about sin, so today, let's consider this short passage from the Psalms:

None of us know our faults. Forgive me when I sin without knowing it. Don't let me do wrong on purpose, Lord, or let sin have control over my life. Then I will be innocent, and not guilty of some terrible fault. (Psa. 19:12-13)

During the liturgy in our church each Sunday we have a time set aside for privately confessing our sins to God and asking Him for forgiveness. As I’ve mentioned before, I'm never finished when it's time to move on! I know myself well enough to know that every area of my life is tainted by my own selfishness, including my “good intentions." In the first part of today's passage, the psalmist writes, "None of us know our faults. Forgive me when I sin without knowing it." Did you know that you and I can sin without knowing it? In the book of Jeremiah, the Old Testament prophet says, "The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is?" I know I don’t! That's why regular confession is so good for us. Sometimes we don't even know our own sin! Despite having a constant supply of known sins to confess, sometimes we unknowingly hide our sin from ourselves. We can't hide it from God, though. He knows all about it. In 1 John 1:9, the Apostle writes, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

In other words, when we confess our sin to God, He promises to forgive us and clean us up. Today, take a few moments to confess your sin—those known and unknown—then ask God to forgive you. He has promised that He will do it...and that is very Good News!  

© 2024 Dave Lambert