The Wednesday homegroup started a new series this week on John’s three letters. One of John’s main reasons for writing these letters is to provide a series of tests for distinguishing between genuine Christians and those who falsely claim to know Jesus.
In chapter 1 of his first letter, John quotes 3 claims of such false claimants in v6-10. Within this section he states the glorious promise: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (v9).
A distinguishing characteristic of a true Christian is, therefore, the practice of confessing our sins to God. I have previously noted that one measure of Christian maturity is the length of time between us committing a particular sin and confessing that sin to God.
Confession of sin truly is good for the Christian soul! It’s why Jesus teaches us to pray immediately after “Give us today our daily bread”, “Forgive us our debts” (Matthew 6v11,12). You may also have heard the wise advice “Keep short accounts with God”.
The wonderful confidence we have is that because God is faithful and just, He will forgive and cleanse us as we confess our sins to Him. Of course, the full ‘benefit’ of such confession is when we really appreciate and receive God’s forgiveness deep within our hearts.
Peace and Grace