Positive Demand Of Transgressors
By The Late Elder B. E. Echols
In this article we are dealing with a subject that applies to both Christians and sinners. This positive demand of all transgressors is an often overlooked and neglected element of repentance–the confession of sins. Every transgressor of God’s laws must make a CONFESSION of same (Prov 28:13) always to God and to whomsoever else it is due. One’s confession of sins should always be as broad and far reaching as his sins have been known and have effected others (Matt 5:23-26) if he wants to make sure of having them forgiven by the Lord anti get in a condition where the blood of Jesus Christ can be applied to his soul.
Confession of sins is sot something separate or foreign to Repentance–it is an integral part of same. Some ministers today either ignore the Bible demands of confession of sins or they do not see it as an essential element or integral part of repentance. But in the face of the following scriptural quotations how could anyone set aside or ignore such a demand? “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso CONFESSETH and forsaketh them shell have (obtain) mercy” (Prov 28:13). “If we CONFESS our sins he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness ” (I John 1:9).
According to the Apostle Paul, one cannot be saved unless he confesses his sins “For with the heart man believelh unto righteousness; and with the mouth CONFESSION is made unto salvation” (Rom 10:10). There fore if one desires forgiveness for all sins and salvation to follow he necessarily and scripturally must confess them or thoroughly repent.
Things That Hinder Folk From Confessing
There are several things which hinder folk from confessing their sins, and we shall deal with each of them separately.
1. It is a very humiliating ordeal. (II Chron 7:14; Luke 15:17-21) Does not the Bible demand all mankind to humble themselves in the sight of the Lord in order to draw nigh to God? In this respect the confession of sins begins to bring proud men and women into favor with God as they humble themselves before Him. (Psalm 9:12; 10:17) Solomon says “The Lord is far from the wicked” (Prov 15:29) but “He shall save the humble person ” (lob 22:29).
2. Endeavoring to forsake without confessing. Keep in mind it is he who confesses his sins that usually succeeds in forsaking them. Did not Solomon say “He that (first) confesseth and (secondarily) forsaketh them (his sins) shall have mercy?” One will definitely be hindered from receiving forgiveness for the sins he has committed if he fails to make the proper confession of them although he should succeed in forsaking same. We cannot ignore any part of God’s demands and receive the desired benefits for our souls and bodies–whether it be a material physical or a spiritual need or blessing.
3. Confession of sins is a horrible exposure. There is no person who can uncover his past life and drag his old mean and ungodly sins out into the open without feeling some remorse of conscience. Such a step or action calls for a lot of grace. It also helps one to see and realize the terribleness of all his sinful and ungodly acts. Acts and deeds he once passed off as some slight error or mistake he now views as great and horrible transgressions that are certainly going to damn his soul.
4. Public opinion and lying professions. How hard it is for one to confess his sins or wrong doing to one who has held him in high esteem and has never dreamed of him being guilty of such acts. But we must keep in mind that the opinions of other people will never clear one of guilt before God. We must properly confess our sins or be eternally lost.
Then those professions one has made whether in word or action are hard to ignore or set aside and by confessing his sins make it very evident that he has been deceived or acted the hypocrite. Of all confessions one might have to make there are none that likely calls for more grace.
5. The loss of position or employment. Here is another fence as it were that is hard to climb when one’s confession involves such things as position or employment. If he is not careful the devil will use such situations to keep him from making a confession but one should keep in mind that he had better take the chance of losing positions in the world or church and have his present employment terminated than to refrain from confessing his sins and pay the penalty in a devil’s hell–“where the worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched.” However one does not often lose a job or position by making confession of his sins. God sees to this by touching the hearts of cruel and wicked men and making them glad and eager to forgive show mercy extend one’s employment etc.
The Direct And Indirect Results Of Confessing
1. Mercy and forgiveness from God. By reading Proverbs 28:13 and I John 1:8 you will see that the confessing of one’s sins and errors definitely obtains mercy and forgiveness from the Lord. It is a
wonderful thing to be a recipient of God’s mercy in any degree but especially in the matter of being forgiven for all transgressions. One feels very grateful to God for having shown so much mercy toward him while he reveled in sin and ungodly things.
2. It advances one on his way to cleansing and salvation. Again we read, “If we confess our sins I He is faithful and just … to cleanse us from all unrighteousness ” (I John 1:8) and “with the mouth confession is made UNTO salvation” (Rom 10:10).
3. Prosperity. Solomon declares that “he that covereth his sins shall not proper ” thus implying that the way to prosperity in both spiritual and material matters is for us to properly confess all our sins if guilty of any.
4. Divine healing for the body. In James 5:16 we read “CONFESS your faults one to another … that ye say BE HEALED.” Many church folk fail to obtain healing for their bodies because they do not comply with this
demand or prescription.
5. Restores fellowship with God and man. (I John 1:3-9; Luke 15:17-24) This benefit or result of confessing one’s sins is one of the best. One cannot enjoy life or anything else that is worthwhile and at the same time be out of fellowship with God and His people. A proper confession of one’s sins is sure to restore fellowship with God and with all God-fearing and spiritual church folk.
6. Joy in heaven and on earth. (Luke 15:7, 21-24) Confession of sins often causes one to either weep or shout for joy of heart. Those church folk who arc dead spiritually and have not enjoyed any of God’s heaven-sent blessings (I Peter 1:11-12) for some time could have a real heartfelt shout in the camp if they would confess all their sins of commission and omission.
7. Helps produce soul-saving revivals. (11 Chron 7:14) A general confession of sins and errors by any church group is one of the things that help produce a soul-saving revival. It helped produce revivals in Bible says and it will certainly produce like results today. (Neh 9:1-3; Acts 19:1820 Mal 3:6; Heb 13:8)
I trust that this article will be received prayerfully and bring enlightenment and blessing to all who read it. We hope to follow up with another article on “Things That Spoil Confession, ” and possibly one on “Confession To Whom Confession Is Due.”
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