Confessing our sins

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1 John 1:5-7 says:
5 This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.
6 If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth;
7 but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.
Who is being addressed in this portion of scripture? It is those who are a part of the body of Christ. Some believe that John was addressing unbelievers. I do not believe that that could be possible. For one, why would an unbeliever care about walking in the light, and why would he care about fellowship? The Greek word for walk in verse 7 is the word “περιπατέω” (peripateo – Strongs# G4043), and means to set one’s lifestyle by and to live under its control. How could one who is not saved facilitate or even desire to do that (see 1 Corinthians 2:14)?
Verse 5 makes it very clear that God is light. John uses the word light in order to contrast it against the word darkness. I believe that the word light in this portion of scripture represents righteousness, and the word darkness, represents sin.
Verse 6 says that if we say that we have fellowship with God and yet walk (set our lifestyle by) in darkness, we lie and we are not practicing the truth that is found in God’s word. The Greek word for practice in verse 6 is “ποιοῦμεν” (poioumen – Strongs# G4160) and means to consistently put forth what is right, which in this case is not being done.
Verse 7 is in contrast with verse 6. Verse 7 states that whenever we walk in the light of God’s word, we will not only have fellowship with God, but we will also have fellowship with other believers who are a part of the body of Christ. Did you know that when you are out of fellowship with God, you are out of fellowship with your brethren in Jesus Christ also? Verse 7 goes on to say that when we are walking in fellowship with God (and other believers) the blood of Christ cleanses us from all sin. The Greek word for cleanse is “καθαρίζω” (katharizō – Strongs# G2511), and means to be purified from all forms of wickedness, and to be freed from the defilement, and the guilt of sin. The word “cleanses” is found to be in the “present tense, active voice, Indicative mood in the Greek. This means that it is true, and that it is consistently applied today by God in regards to the believer’s daily walk in Christ, whenever we are in fellowship with Him.
1 John 8-10 says:
8 If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us.
9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us.
Verse 8 is very important. The words “we have” are written in the present tense. If we say that we have no sin, then we are lying. I believe that the one who states that he has no sin, is actually proclaiming that he no longer has a sin nature and he no longer has the ability to sin. Have you ever met a believer who says that they no longer have the ability to sin? I have. I have even met a few of them right here on Facebook. Well, let me say that the person who believes that they cannot sin any longer, according to verse 8 is only deceiving himself. He is not deceiving God, or his spouse, or his children, or his friends. As long as we are in this body of flesh, we will continue to sin.
Verse 9 instructs us on how to be cleansed from our daily sins. It is done through confession. “if we confess our sins”. The Greek word for confess is “ὁμολογέω” (homologeō – Strongs# G3670) and means to agree with God in regards to the daily sins that we have committed. Verse 9 goes on to say that when we confess our sins, God is faithful to forgive our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. God is faithful. In other words, God is forever trustworthy to keep His promise and to forgive us of our sins whenever we confess them to Him. Not only that, verse 9 states that when we confess our sins to God, He will also cleanse us of all other unrighteousness. That would include any sins that we have committed and have forgotten about, and any unrighteous acts that we have committed without realizing it. A good example of that would be in regards to driving. In most states, the maximum speed limit is 65. Have you ever driven above the posted speed limit without realizing it? Perhaps you were having a conversation with your passenger, or speaking to someone on your cell phone. Speeding in this case would be considered an unrighteous act because you have broken a state law. Verse 9 says that when you confess any known sin to God, God will also cleanse you of all the unrighteous acts that you have committed (without knowing it) at the time of your confession. This cleansing goes back to verse 7 – “and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin”, which is facilitated through our daily confession to God.
Verse 10 states that if we say that we have not sinned, we make God a liar. This is clearly speaking of the daily sins which our flesh produces.
Galatians 5:17 says:
For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please.
Our flesh (sin nature) is always ready to do the things that are in opposition to the word of God. Whenever we are under the control of our flesh, the flesh will consistently produce sinful works that will brake our daily fellowship with God (see Galatians 5:19-21). Therefore whenever we tell ourselves that we are not sinning, or we know longer can sin, we make God out to be a liar, because His word says just the opposite.
Clearly, 1 John 1:9 applies to all those who are a part of the body of Christ today. I believe that confessing our sins is essential in regards to having a continuous daily fellowship and walk with God. As we confess our daily sins to God, the Holy Spirit will fill us (Ephesians 5:18), as we set our minds upon the things above (Colossians 3:1-2), and walk by the power and control of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:16).
PLEASE NOTE – 1 John 1:9 has NOTHING to do with the forgiveness that we received when we first believed the gospel (1 Corinthians 15:1-4). The forgiveness (past, present, and future) that we received when we believed the gospel is POSITIONAL forgiveness which applies to every believer in Jesus Christ (Ephesians 4:32; Colossians 2:13; 1 John 2:12). 1 John 1:9 has only to do with the daily forgiveness of our sins, and our daily walk with Christ.
KEEP LOOKING UP (Titus 2:13)
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