1 John 1:9 – “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” NKJV
The process to Salvation is crystal clear in the Bible and it is incredibly simple but often complicated and misunderstood by humans. The three step process described by John in our text is: Confession, Forgiveness and Cleansing. But it is more than that but it is worth our time to consider what is said here and the subtle nuisances found in this sentence and truth.
- The Word “IF” is inescapable.
The Bible is filled with “if’ – “then” clauses, statements or conditions regarding the promises of God but that imperative is critical in this case. If implies that we might attempt some other method other than honest confession. Man has a tendency to justify his wrong and earn his redemption. Therefore, unless we confess we will not move to step two in the process.
- The Word “CONFESS” is critical.
The word “confess” here includes and means to acknowledge. We are to agree with God that we have “missed the mark” or sinned. We have failed to meet His standards, been weighed in the balance and found wanting and we have violated His Law of Life and Liberty. Unless we confess there will be no step two or three. There will be no redemption. We will remain in our lost condition.
Confession of sin flows out of a broken heart not because we were caught but because we disappointed and broke God’s heart and laws. It is remorse out of our guilt and repentance is doing a 180 degree turn and going the other direction.
- The Word “FORGIVE” is important.
God not only forgives He forgives ALL our sins. Not some but ALL and that is critical. That is why the Paul could declare in 2 Corinthians 5:17 that if we are IN Christ we are new creations and the passed is gone as we now walk in the newness of life. All that we were is gone. We may not have reached sinless perfection but we are a totally different creature on the inside. We look the same, our mannerism may be much the same, the inflection of our voice the same but we are NEW CREATIONS. We have been given a new heart, our spirits made alive and our souls born again. We are REDEEMED!
- The Word “CLEANSE” is not to be overlooked.
The word means to “purge” or “purify”. We have not just found that those things on our account have been erased but our person is transformed. It is not simply that God now opts not to remember our past and hold it against us it is that He transforms us into new creatures. We are BORN AGAIN spiritually!
It all begins with “IF”. Failure to “confess” results in no forgiveness and no cleansing. It is not earned or deserved for it is by grace that we are saved through faith. It is the gift of God through the Lord Jesus Christ but on our side of the ledger it begins with the action required in the word “if”. Total Confession brings Total Forgiveness and Total Cleansing.
May the blessings of the LORD be upon you as you walk in His Redemption and Grace!