Vital Signs: Confessing Your Sin
1 John 1:8-10
Pastor Ron Johnson
As I’ve shared each of the last 2 Sundays, the Apostle John was very clear about WHY he wrote the book of 1 John to this unnamed group of professing believers in 5:13. In that verse he declared… I write these things (all he had written in the letter) to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that (purpose) you may KNOW that you have eternal life.
Last week we saw in vv 5-7 that John unashamedly proclaimed that since our God is _______ (a God of truth whose words are true in addition to being holy and morally pure) we his children are to ________ ___ ____ ______.
In other words, those who really do belong to Jesus and have eternal life are not only people who walk in the light, but they’re also people who are aware of their sinfulness and have made a habit of confessing their sins to God and receiving His forgiveness on an ongoing basis .
Now in vv 8-10, we’ll see that those who really do belong to Jesus and have eternal life are people who are not only aware of their ___________, but have made a habit of ___________ their sins to God and receiving His forgiveness on an ongoing basis.
1 John 1:8-10 If we say 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.10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
Church family, according to God’s word, those who truly know Jesus Christ and have eternal life also possess a ___________ ________ ___ ______.
(in v 8) The fact that the word sin is singular here definitely plays into how we should understand the passage and it appears John is referring to some who convinced and possibly even taught that they had no sin disposition.
I do look forward to that future day, when I'm with God in heaven and there will no longer be any sin present in my life. However, that day has not yet come.
Now you may not run into many people who have convinced themselves there IS no such thing as sin very often, but you're far more likely to encounter people who live their lives as if they're under the impression they never sin.
God help me... God help us... to be increasingly aware of the ____ ___ ______ ________ __________.
Not so we can become morbidly reflective and drag ourselves over the coals repeatedly, but that we might confess it and draw nearer to God and allow others to benefit as well.
As far as Satan is concerned, what could be greater and render the church less effective than for the people to be content with living self-righteous lives, carrying on as if they had no sin and actually believing God was pleased with them?
Did you know that when you live your life as if you have no sin (even when you're aware in your head that you do), it not only affects your communion with God, but it also affects your relationships with family members, your spouse, the people in your church, your neighbors and the people of the world around you (in a really negative way)?
In short, when you don’t confess your sin to God it not only affects YOU, but ____ _________ ________ _____ as well.
In v 8, John makes it clear he wants us to be aware that those who say or even live as if they have no sin deceive themselves. In other words, they're not merely deceived, they're SELF-deceived.
Brothers and sisters, don’t deceive yourselves about your sin. When we do that, John says the truth is not in us.
Instead of believing or acting like they never sin, God's people should be very aware of their sin and equally familiar with confessing it.
What do you do when you recognize you've sinned? Do you _________ it? Do you ___________ it? Do you ________ it altogether and ___________ it? You might be here today and are even making the mistake of ___________ your sin from God. If you’re doing any of these things, you surely won’t be confessing it.
the Greek word CONFESS actually means to ________ or _________ ____ _________ about something.
Biblical confession is really about so much more than saying the words "I'm sorry” or simply acknowledging "I've been caught."
"When was the last time I asked the Lord to forgive me for something sinful I've done? When was the last time I acknowledged my sin was the very reason my Jesus was nailed to a cross and died? When was the last time I asked the Lord for forgiveness for a specific sin or sins and didn't just make some wide, sweeping requests to be forgiven of unspecific sin? When was the last time my confession of sin was followed by thoughts or actions consistent with repentance?
According to John, true children of God recognize their sin, confess it to God and receive forgiveness! This is something we’re all aware of and there’s a good chance that your brothers and sisters around you are also aware.
Let's be honest, it can be really difficult to see our own sin at times, but I'd encourage each of you today to consider what David prayed in Ps139:23-24. In it, he said "Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! 24 And see if there be any grievous way in me."
When you belong to God and are willing to identify, confess and repent of your sin. He's promised to do what only He can do and that's forgive and cleanse you from all unrighteousness.
The degree of fellowship you experience with God daily will be directly affected by how willing you are to acknowledge and confess your sin.