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Don't Call God a Liar

“If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.”

Few of us would have the audacity to call God a liar, but that doesn’t mean we don’t often live that way. Last week we talked about the importance of confessing our sins to one another, but now we want to look at the necessity of confessing our sins…to God!

In the opening verses of 1 John, John sets the stage for his readers in how they are to tell if someone is a true follower of Christ. He says…

“5 This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.”

It makes sense – if God is light, then those who claim to know him, to ‘have fellowship with him’ should reflect his light in the way they live and not ‘walk in darkness’ (ie. comfortably live in sin). But, if this is where John stopped, it would certainly sound as if he were requiring a kind of sinless perfectionism.  But, thankfully, that's not where he ends! Instead he goes on to say…

7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. 8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

These words make clear that to ‘"..walk in the light...’" is not a call to sinless perfectionism – but the characteristic of those whose sins are forgiven! Notice how he connects those who “…walk in the light…” in v. 7 with those who “…confess our sins…” in v. 9. He’s making an important point – an essential aspect of 'light-walking' is confession! Or to put it another way – to "...walk in the light..." does not mean we never sin, but that when we sin, we are quick to bring it ‘into the light’ through confession and repentance before God.

So, if we do not confess our sins, then we are saying – or at least acting like "...we have not sinned..." which is to essentially, "...make God a liar.’ Because the consistent testimony of scripture is that man is sinful – even after we are redeemed and receive a new heart and God’s Spirit is placed within us, we continue to sin. Yes, we will walk in greater and greater freedom from sin, but as long as we are in this world, we will continue to sin. And so, if we are to live and walk daily in the light  – then we must be a people who confess our sin!

So, my question to you is, “Do You? Do you make confession of your sin before the Lord a regular part of your prayer life? Are you aware of any areas of sin in your life right now?” If the answer to any of these questions is, “no” then let me encourage you to prayerfully begin. Ask the Lord to make you aware of your sin…look to the light of His Word...or (if you are really bold) ask a trusted mature believer where they might see sin in your life. And remember, confession isn’t something for really guilty Christians…or really holy Christians…it’s something for all Christians!

If you’d like some additional help on HOW to grow in confession, look for next week’s blog where we’ll have offer some biblical instruction and helpful tips!

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