What Does the Bible Say About Confession?
Even Kings Confess Their Sins.
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
There are two types of confession in the Bible: an initial confession of faith in Jesus Christ, and an ongoing confession of our sins to God.
A confession of faith is the action you need to take to become a believer in Jesus Christ and receive the gift of eternal life He alone offers. Romans 10:9 says you will be saved if you honestly admit “…that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead.” True salvation is an undertaking of the heart, not just a mind task. It doesn’t seem like a complex decision, but is the most important decision of your life.
Jesus goes on to say in Matthew 10:32: “Everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven.” Once you are a believer, you aren’t required to confess your faith every time you sin, but you are to called to confess to the Lord the moment you realize that you have sinned (see 1 John 1:9 above). When you admit your sin, you are confessing that it truly is sin that separates you from Christ, and you are agreeing that Christ is the only person who can cover that sin.
As a Believer in Jesus, Why Should I Confess My Sins?
After you have become a Christian, do you confess your sins in order to remain saved? No; the Bible tells us that once you are saved, you remain sealed: Ephesians 1:13 says “When you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, [you] were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit.” At the time of confession, the Holy Spirit, Who is the Spirit of Jesus, comes to live in your heart. Romans 8:9 says “You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.” We continually confess our sins not to preserve our salvation, but to remain in fellowship with the One who has saved us.
A Confession of Sin by A King
Millions know the story of the teenager David, who defeated the nine-foot Philistine giant, Goliath (1 Samuel 17:39-50). David was anointed by God to become the King of Israel, yet he is also a prime example of how a great man could commit terrible sins.
The story is told in 2 Samuel 11 and 12: When he was King, David had an affair with a woman named Bathsheba, and her resulting pregnancy threatened to expose the affair. Trying to cover it up, David brought Bathsheba’s husband Uriah back from the battle so he could sleep with his wife. Uriah thought it was more important to focus on his job as a soldier while Israel was at war, so he declined to go home to be with Bathsheba. So David wrote a letter, delivered by Uriah, instructing his commander to send Uriah to certain death on the front lines.
Time passed, and David thought his scheme had succeeded. But the prophet Nathan knew what had happened (the Bible does not tell us how he knew), and he confronted David with his great sin. 2 Samuel 12:13-14 says “David said to Nathan, ‘I have sinned against the Lord.’”
Later, David wrote a Psalm of confession (Psalm 51), which was a plea to God for mercy, forgiveness and cleansing: “Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin! For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me. Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you may be justified in your words and blameless in your judgment.” David shows that he was genuinely sorry for his sins. Because he repented, God mercifully forgave him. He will do the same for you.
If you have not yet done so, openly and honestly confess Christ Jesus as your personal Savior. Whenever you sense the Holy Spirit’s conviction about sin, confess it! King David couldn’t hide his sin and neither can you or I. Not only did David feel the effect of his own sin, it also affected Bathsheba, who saw her husband murdered and her baby die. David’s sin had driven a wedge between him and God, and he had to repent and confess it fully in order to be right with God again. When you sin, you should also ask God to “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.” Psalm 51:10. David admitted, “For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer.” (Psalm 32:3-4) Do not wait to feel the heavy hand of God. Take the time to confess daily.
Pray this week:
Jesus, I want to confess that I believe in you in my heart. Please help me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
How do you repent from Sin?