Confession And Repentance

We often think of confession as something which is more relevant to sinners or the unsaved than to Christians.  However, many verses in the Bible about confession are directed to Christians.  It should be noted that , while confession and repentance are not synonymous, repentance should be an essential component of confession.  In 1 John 1:9  we are told ‘if we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’  And in James 5:16 we are instructed to ‘confess your faults one to another and pray one for another.’  In both cases the writer is addressing Christians and their need for confession.
Throughout the Old and New Testaments confession plays an essential  role in the lives and accomplishments of some of the major players in Biblical history.1)    Before Daniel received a visit from the angel Gabriel who gave him a vision of the coming of the Messiah and the events of the end times, he  humbled himself before God and confessed ‘I was praying and confessing my sin and the sin of my people.’ (Daniel 9:20)2)    When Isaiah saw the majesty of the Lord in the temple he realized his own sinfulness and confessed ‘Woe is me! for I am a man of unclean        lips’. (Isaiah 6:5)  This occurred before he wrote one of the greatest  books of the Bible.3)    Job was described as a ‘perfect and upright man’, yet after a direct conversation with God he declared ‘I abhor myself, and repent in dust and          ashes.’ (Job 42:6)

Revival is something we often pray for but very few of us get to experience.  It is accepted that revival must begin within the church, or the body of Christ.  Why do we see so few revivals today? Could it be that there is a lack of confession of, or genuine repentance from sin among Christians?Although forgiven Christians will not be judged and condemned for their sins, John tells us that ‘if we say we have no sin we lie.’  Maybe we forget or overlook the fact that Christians sin in unique ways, since their thoughts and actions should be in obedience to the will of God and under the direction of the Holy Spirit. ​The Bible clearly defines ‘quenching or grieving’ the Holy Spirit  by Christians as sin.  In contrast, the unsaved are for the most part unaware of God’s will for them as they do not have the Holy Spirit to guide them.  Christians may also sin in ways that are not obvious to them.  In Psalm 19 David wrote ‘Cleanse me from secret faults’ and ‘keep back thy servant from presumptuous sins.’
Why is confession so important to Christians and what are the typical ways in which Christians sin?  Probably the majority of sins for which a Christian will have to account are sins of omission, or failure to do the things God would expect us to do.  This would include the following:
1)   do we ‘love God with all our hearts and souls and minds and strength?’2)   are we good stewards of the time, treasure and talents God has entrusted us with?3)   do we take advantage of the opportunities to witness that God places before us in our daily lives?4)   even in our worship do we seek to glorify God only, or are we often guilty of going through the motions?
Probably the greatest problem with unconfessed sin is that it interferes with or breaks our fellowship with God, and results in God not hearing or answering our prayers.   In light of this, David asks God to search him with the familiar words ‘Search me O God and know my heart; try me and know my thoughts.’  In this case David is not relying on his own ability to examine himself but is asking God to search his heart.  When we  pray like that we can be assured that God, Who is omniscient, will reveal even our secret or presumptuous sins and invite us to seek His forgiveness and cleansing.

22 thoughts on “Confession And Repentance”

  1. Helo, a big thanks to you for sharing this insightful and blessed article with the members of the of the public it’s really going to be helpful to so many. Confession and repentance is one major challenge Christians through. The truth is some of them do confess but finds it difficult to repent especially when trying with their own will and strength forgetting the fact that for by strength shall no man prevail. Anyways just like you’ve said praying just like David will really be a great idea and helpful.

  2. Hello there! this article blessed my life and increased my passion for reading the bible. I totally agree with you on everything you’ve shared here especially the fact that christians commit sins in ways they do not know; which I believe if we as christian don’t keep confessing our sins, it might lead to condemnation.


  3. I must say you did a great job posting such an interesting and informative article on confession and repentance….As a Christan we usually confess our sins to God when we go against his commandments.. then to be a devoted Christan one must repent by turning away from their old ways ..hope you know the difference now

  4. Hey nice article you have there. I am blessed to have stumbled into such an amazing article. Confession and Repentance is very vital in the christaindom, for one to have a genuine repentance he/she must have confess Jesus Christ as their Lord and personal saviour, that’s why the Bible says with thy mouth confession is made and with thy heart man believes unto righteousness, once you have confessed and believed you have been saved.

  5. Thank you so much for posting this core theological write up. This is a fundamental truth on repentance and reconciliation (confession). When we talk about confession, it is really about the already converted Christians who have failed in the love and observance of the God’s commandments. These Christians come short of God’s glory because of their inabilities as a result of sin. Only confessions or reconciliation will amend their relationship with God. while repentance has to do more with those who are yet to accept the Gospel and consequently living in desolate life. Their conversion introduces them to the relationship, though existing but not recognized. Thanks so much for your wonderful examples

  6. It is interesting that so ,many preachers state, lack of revival turns on repentance.  Facts lost on most.  The word Repent is not used one single time in the book of John.  IT’S NOT THERE.  i WILL PAY YOU $100,000 TO FIND THE WORD REPENT IN JOHN. That is how sure I am.  

    Deeper Facts:  In all of Paul’s writings in the New Testament, Repent is used once.  Romans 2: 4 in regard to judging others as sinful and yourself as sinless and condemning yourself at whatever point you do.  

    They’ll tell us, these preachers God has not taken one jot or tittle out of the Law and using this incomplete statement they justify what I call Jayeeesiz and the Tin Commandments.  Tin because no one keeps them to God’s satisfaction, nor are they able to do so.  Romans 7.  

    The word used by Jesus in Mark 1 was metanoia.  It means change of mind.  He said, therefore, “change your mind and believe the good news.”  Jesus explains how salvation takes place “Born of the Spirit” and how it is authored and finished at John 16: 7-14.  Jesus explains sanctification at John 17: 19-23.

           For them I sanctify myself, that they too may be truly sanctified.  Jesus Prays for All Believers

           20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one— 23 I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.         

  7. Hello there, thanks for this very inspiring post in confession and repentance, in the christaindom cinfession is not something that we can overemphasize that why the holy book admonisshes us to confesss our fault one to another, however confession must come with repentance, that is to me what validates confession, which is your ability not to return to the same you confessed if not confession would just be an escape for continious wrong doing. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Thank you for this really insightful post. As a young Catholic myself, I have been encouraged that confession is important but was never made aware of its Biblical history. You beautifully articulated the story of Daniel to show how repenting is essential and should not be overlooked as a tedious or insignificant task. 

  9. Thanks for sharing this article, I believe it will help to increase awareness of our own nature and lifestyle as a Christian, some Christian will never agree that they are sinners, I have seen some that will confidently tell you that since they became born again that they have not sin again…forgetting that our very own nature, the way we think and the things we should do whuch we left behind is sin before God.

    Fir that fact that we said we have no sin..we have comited the worse sin by making God a lier and ofcourse God cannot lie. Without repentance then, there may not be any need for confession.
    The secrete sins is also a big problem in the church today.i believe many will be bless through this review, God bless you.

  10. Personally i as a Christian know very well that i am not perfect despite the fact that i have been saved and Christ lives in me. I believe that most Christians think and believe that confession and repentance is mostly attributed to non-believers, this is absolutely very untrue. Confessions and repentance is for Christians as well, it helps with renewing and humbling of oneself through Christ. This is why i always pray asking the Lord to forgive me for all the wrongs i have done, knowingly and unknowingly, through my speech, through my acts and through my thoughts/mind. Because i know that i am not perfect and there are things i know and things i don’t know but because Christ is in me He knows my heart and mind. 

  11. Confession and repentance.  Confession frees a person, and repentance saves or rescues him be he/her, a saint or sinner. 
    Being a Christian, doesn’t exempt one from making mistakes, losing one’s way, or even backsliding.  If and when the Christian is convicted of his sin or transgression, by the Holy Spirit, and he within his heart fall to his knees in all sincerely at the altar of his heart and confesses his sin to a loving and forgiving heavenly father, he will find swift forgiveness imparted by our Savior Jesus Christ.  Repentance is the act of one’s free will, and true repentance will follow sincere confession.  These two are as a married couple.  You can’t have one without the other.  Peace.  Sweet peace that surpasses all understanding will fill the heart, soul, and mind of the believer as it is the wonderful offspring born of true confession and sincere repentance. Thanks for such a great article, and a really good read.  Enjoyed it.  

  12. I am a Christian myself, I believe in God the Father, the Son and the holy ghost or spirit. I go to church every Sunday, and I read the Bible with my mum every night and I’m reading Mark in the Bible. 

    As a Christian is important to confess and repent and keep saying sorry to God because we might have done something sinful that we don’t know, it’s very easy to sin but God can forgive you, so that’s why God sends his son Jesus Christ to die for us for our sins. 

    The Bible is the power of God, it helps people to get connected to God and get closer to God. 

    Thank you for posting this article about God and God bless you. ⛪😇

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