Daily Devotionals

Stages of the Cross: Week 3 - Thursday

But if we confess our sins to Him, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. 1 John 1:9

I often have a difficult time apologizing. It is certainly humbling because apologizing requires that we admit that we were wrong to another person. It requires that we admit our imperfection and that we have done something that hurt someone else. Even though it is hard, Scripture teaches us of the necessity of admitting the things we have done wrong, apologizing, and turning away from wrongdoing.

We've been talking all week about the forgiveness we have been offered because of Jesus' death on the cross and resurrection. It's not enough to know about the forgiveness offered to us because of Jesus' death and resurrection. We actually have to ask for God's forgiveness. We have to admit to our sin and tell God that we are sorry for the sinful way we have been living. We must realize the fact that our sin has separated us from God, who is perfect and cannot be around sin. Just like it is necessary for any relationship to admit when we hurt someone, apologize, and live differently as a result, we must repent and apologize for the things we have done to hinder our relationship with God.

When it comes to your life, is there any sin that you have not acknowledged? Do you need to stop and repent from living in a way that is dishonoring to God? Stop today and turn to Him, acknowledge the things that have broken your relationship with Him, and commit to living differently.

1 John 1 assures us that when we do this, God will be faithful to forgive us and restore our relationship with Him. In this chapter, we learn that if we say we are sinless, we are only deceiving ourselves (verse eight). Alternatively, if we confess our sin to God, He is quick to forgive and will restore our relationship with Him. Aren't you so thankful that God is forgiving, not holding our sin against us when we turn to Him?

Moving Toward Action

Take a few moments to consider your life. Is there any sin or wrongdoing in your life that you need to confess? Have you done something contrary to God's instruction for your life? What is holding you back from repentance? Are you unwilling to stop your sinful behavior? Is your pride keeping you from recognizing the wrong things that you have done in your life? I urge you to turn to God, apologize, and turn away from the sin in your life. In your journal or a notebook, write out a prayer of confession for anything in your life that is contrary to what God wants for your life. The good news is that we know He will faithfully forgive us when we turn to Him.

Going Deeper

Read 1 John 1:1-9 (NLT)

We proclaim to you the one who existed from the beginning, whom we have heard and seen. We saw him with our own eyes and touched him with our own hands. He is the Word of life. This one who is life itself was revealed to us, and we have seen him. And now we testify and proclaim to you that he is the one who is eternal life. He was with the Father, and then he was revealed to us. We proclaim to you what we ourselves have actually seen and heard so that you may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. We are writing these things so that you may fully share our joy.

This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all. So we are lying if we say we have fellowship with God but go on living in spiritual darkness; we are not practicing the truth. But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.

If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.