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Confessing Your Sins (1 John 1:9)

Introductory Thoughts

Because of certain false teachings, there remains a great deal of confusion concerning the matter of confessing sins. However, when we accept the Bible as our sole authority, the confusion dissipates and disappears. Our earlier study showed that actions must follow confession, but to whom should we confess? Some religions falsely teach that we confess our sins to man, but this is simply untrue. The Bible requires that man confess his sins to the Lord. This truth is confirmed repeatedly throughout the word of God. Our First John passage teaches this, but the Bible provides several additional witnesses (Psalm 32:5; Joshua 7:19; 2 Chronicles 30:22; Ezra 10:1; and Daniel 9:4, 20, for instance). Our next study delves into the subject of Christians confessing something to men, but confession of sin or sins must be made solely to God.

Devotional Thoughts

  • (For children): What should you do if you stole a toy from a friend and then lied about it? God wants you to confess your sin to Him. Simply name the sin and give God the details of what you are going to do about it. You might say to God: Lord, I stole Tommy's car; and when Mom asked me about it, I lied and told her I did not do it. Please help me to do the right thing.
  • (For everyone):  Do you waste time and strength confessing your sins to other people instead of taking them directly to the Lord? How is a man going to help you get forgiveness from the Lord?
  • Confessing your sins to the Lord restores fellowship that might otherwise remain hindered. What do you think happens when we fail to confess our daily sins to the Lord?

Prayer Thoughts

  • Ask the Lord to help you to be faithful in confessing your sins.
  • Ask God to show you that confession is to be made to Him only.


My Heart, My Life, My All I Bring