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By Glenda Ward

McDowell CountyGlenda Ward McDowell County


 In the opening chapter of 1 John, verse 9 gives us an accurate picture of what confession involves.

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins,

And to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Confession is to be of one Word. This is to say what Jesus says in John 14:6 “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” It is that of which one holds to be true, to declare faith in God, to declare to be a follower of Jesus Christ, and to declare your name is written in the Book of Life. “He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the Book of Life, but I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels.”

Common Misunderstandings About Confession

  • Confession – God tells us when we confess our sins, we can expect the fulfillment of His promise to forgive us of our sins. God also promises to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
  • Confession – is not a person-to-person event. It is a conversation that takes place between us and God.
  • Confession – is not something we do to earn forgiveness. We don’t earn our forgiveness; Jesus Christ has already earned the forgiveness and cleansing that God grants us as His gift.

What Confession Really Means

When we confess to God that we have tried to live independently from Him, and want to join ourselves anew to Him, He responds by cleansing us at the core of our being. That initial cleansing is a one-time event that happens at salvation.

But then there are our current daily human failures. These need to be cleansed as well by humbling ourselves before God every day. Confession is to say the same thing that God says. When we confess, we describe something exactly as God describes it. Each time we fall short of God’s character we agree with God by naming to Him our faulty attitude, unkind words, or selfish actions exactly what God names them. Confession is no more and no less than being honest and transparent before God. When we are smitten down because we have sinned against God, and we turn again to Him, confessing His name, praying, and making supplication; we make our confession to God. (Reference 1 Kings 8:33)

 “God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all. On our new birth and our new creation in Christ, through faith, in which we are now children of God; “If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk-in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth” (1 John 1:5-6).

For there is one mediator between God and man, and that is the man Jesus Christ (Reference 1 Timothy 2:5). At one time we were in darkness, but now we are light in the Lord. We are children of light and part of the light is truth. The truth is that we cannot be marked by the secretness of cloaking ourselves or our motives so that people don’t know who we really are! We won’t try to pose ourselves on the outside what we are not on the inside. That includes being truthful about our sinfulness and struggles with our sins. We need to be known as open books appropriately read by accountable, mature people in our life. Not a secretive person. “Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another” (Ephesians 4:25). We are people of truth and this is a foundational building block of relational confession. We are to own and acknowledge our sins as true disciples and own the guilt we feel that goes with it. We are to declare to be true and to admit to our sins in words instead of trying to deny our sins. (Reference Job chapter 11)

God’s doctrine is pure, and we are to be clean of sin in His eyes. With the mouth, confession is made to salvation (Romans 10). The Biblical meaning of Confession means agreeing with God about our actions. It does not mean atoning for our sins, nor does it earn us forgiveness. In the first chapter of 1 John, verse 9 gives us an accurate picture of what our confession involves. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” The act of confessing places us in harmony with God and others. It is uniting us to God! We shall confess before our Heavenly Father who is in heaven. As in the disturbing of the conscience, we are to disclose all our sins and faults to God.

Confessing is Two Things:

  1. Confessing your faith in Jesus Christ to the world.
  2. Confessing your sins to God.

The confession of Christ and the confession of sin are both necessary for salvation. One is pointless without the other. We have to be honest about our faith and honest about our faults (1 Timothy 6:12-13). When we confess our sins, we are confessing to God something we did wrong. When we confess Christ, we are confessing before God something that we have done right …we believe in Jesus Christ to be our Lord and Savior – the Son of God.


Glenda Ward is a member of Grand View Baptist Church in McDowell County.  She is the mother of five grown children.  Glenda is a Christian writer/author of “Something to Think About” – weekly Christian Articles. She writes Church Programs & Bulletins, VBS Material, Christmas and Easter Programs; all material based on the KJV of the Bible. Also testing the field in tributes, individual memorial writings, etc. You can read more good Christian news from Glenda HERE.