Part 1: To Confess, or to Not Confess?
Have you ever heard the section of Scripture below emphasized in a church service you attended?
1 John 1:8-9 (KJV)
8 If we say that 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.
Or perhaps you’ve heard verses or sayings similar to it. Your church might even have a special place just for the purpose of confessing sins. Other churches are less obvious in this regard and might just require your acknowledgment that you’ve sinned as evidence of your repentance or expect you to participate in a corporate confession (as in the whole church as a group). Regardless of the specific details, the idea is the same, a two-part process. You do something (a work), then you receive a benefit. As in it’s your work (confession/repentance) that brings about the gain (salvation). It becomes a weekly, or daily, or hourly practice. When your salvation is reliant on how recently you’ve confessed your sins, it isn’t really salvation at all. It becomes a fleshly pursuit. Our flesh starts to feel pride in how good of a Christian we are. In our flesh we may even feel puffed up or go about boasting, However, God makes it clear that there is no good thing in the flesh.
Romans 7:18 (KJV)
18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
There is only one thing you can do that affects your salvation. You have to believe on the finished work of the cross. The very moment you believe that Jesus Christ died for your sins you’re changed forever and your sins are blotted out and nailed to the cross. That same moment a Spiritual circumcision occurs where you’re separated from your fleshly, sin-filled body. It no longer has dominion over you.
Colossians 2:11-14 (KJV)
11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:
12 Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.
13 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;
14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;
In that moment you’re also sealed. Sealed until the day of redemption. Not sealed for a few minutes until you sin again. You’re purchased. It’s a permanent transaction that God makes and no one can take you away from Him or change the price.
2 Corinthians 1:22 (KJV)
22 Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.
Ephesians 1:13-14 (KJV)
13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.
Ephesians 4:30 (KJV)
30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
We’ll learn more about where our sins come from, why we still sin, and what true repentance is in the studies to come, but for today you can rest assured that the moment you believe, you’re sealed and no one can take that away from you or put conditions on your salvation. Once saved, always saved!
Join us for our weekly Bible study to learn more about the local church and your role in it.
Wednesdays - 5:30pm in the Rhinelander Goodwill Community Room