Matt 10:32-33
Confession Is Important

most realize that what is happening to America today is not the fault
of the lost but of the saved.  The Bible never commanded the lost to
be good that a nation might be blessed but the saved to be holy that
a nation might be blessed.  What has changed that we have lost the
blessings of God?  I believe there are many things that the church
has turned from in recent years, things that I believe have done us
    1. We have turned from the prayer altar.
    2. We have turned from reading, knowing, and obeying the Bible.
    3. Some have turned from praise and worship.  They merely "attend"
    4. But perhaps the deadliest of all is our turning from
        confession.  Too few are those who confess the things that
        God commands us to confess.

How can a confession be compared to such important things as prayer,
Bible study, and worship?  Aren’t confessions just words?  Maybe, but
words are important.  Words express emotions, convey truth, set our
boundaries, build and destroy relationships.  We need to understand
that confession is important!

I. What is confession?
    A. The word is used some 44 times in the Bible, 20 times in the
        Old Testament and 24 in the New.
        1. In the Old Testament, the same word is used every time.
            a. In the Old Testament before forgiveness could be
                granted, the sinner had to "confess" his sin.

Le 5:5  And it shall be, when he shall be guilty
in one of these things, that he shall confess
that he hath sinned in that thing:

Le 16:21  And Aaron shall lay both his hands upon
the head of the live goat, and confess over him
all the iniquities of the children of Israel….

Le 26:40  If they shall confess their iniquity…
42  Then will I remember my covenant….

            b. The Hebrew word means "to physically throw something
                away, to cast, to shoot, or to bemoan.
            c. The thought by definition was he was throwing sin
                away, bemoaning the fact that he kept that sin for
                himself to begin with.
        2. In the New Testament, two words are used.
            a. One means to acknowledge or to agree fully with.

Mt 3:6  And were baptized of him in Jordan,
confessing their sins.

                (1) The emphasis is to fully agree with no
                (2) This word is translated differently in other

Lu 22:6  And he (Judas) PROMISED, and sought
opportunity to betray him unto them in the
absence of the multitude.

            b. The other word means to profess, to assent, or to
                acknowledge a thing is so aloud.
                (1) Our text is an example of this word.
                (2) God expects us to profess who He is and not to be
                     ashamed of Him
    B. So from the words used for confess, I would say:
        1. It means to mourn and throw something away.
        2. It means to agree without reservation.
        3. It means to acknowledge publicly.

II. Bearing these thoughts in mind, I believe confession is
    A. As human beings, it is important that we confess some things
        to ourselves.
        1. We need to confess they have sinned to ourselves.
            a. Three times God gave Adam and Eve an opportunity to
                confess their sin to Him…
                (1) \\#Ge 3:9\\ "Where art thou?"
                (2) \\#Ge 3:11\\ "Who told thee that thou wast naked?
                     Hast thou eaten of the tree where I commanded
                (3) \\#Ge 3:13\\ "What hast thou done?"
            b. But they would not for they had not admitted it to
                themselves that they had sinned.
                (1) To Adam it was Eve’s fault.
                (2) To Eve it was the serpent’s fault.
            c. And here is one of the roots of man’s push against
                (1) He simply will not acknowledge sin as sin!
                (2) He will explain it, excuse it, justify it, re-
                     name it, and as of the last few years, even
                     legalize it.
                (3) One of the first steps to salvation is to
                    acknowledge to yourself that you are a sinner!
        2. Then we need to carry this thought a bit further.
            a. We need to confess to ourselves that we have been
                wrong about other things.
            b. Sinfulness is not just a problem between us and God.
                (1) It also a problem between us and others!
                (2) We don’t normally say we have sinned against
                (3) We say we have WRONG them or done WRONG.
                (4) However, just like some people cannot confess
                     that they have sinned, some cannot confess they
                     were wrong either!
            c. This is NOT a new condition.
                (1) One of the first examples I see is in Genesis.

Genesis 4:23  And Lamech said unto his wives, Adah
and Zillah, Hear my voice; ye wives of Lamech,
hearken unto my speech: for I have slain a man to
my wounding, and a young man to my hurt.
24  If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, truly
Lamech seventy and sevenfold.

                (2) It is strange that there was a young man in a
                     ditch dead somewhere but Lamech is speaking
                     about how HE is WOUNDED and HURT!
                (3) Some people have never learned to say that they
                     have sinned.
                (4) It is hard for this type of a person to get
                     saved for you cannot be saved without
                     acknowledging your sinfulness.
            d. The first step to having relationships with people and
                to fixing your problems is to confess that you are
    B. As lost people, it is important for us to confess some things
        to God.
        1. We need to confess to God that we have sinned.

Jos 7:19  And Joshua said unto Achan, My son,
give, I pray thee, glory to the LORD God of
Israel, and make confession unto him; and
tell me now what thou hast done; hide it not
from me.

Lu 15:18  I will arise and go to my father,
and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned
against heaven, and before thee,

Lu 15:21  And the son said unto him, Father,
I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight,
and am no more worthy to be called thy son.

            a. I have already said we need to confess to OURSELVES
                that we have sinned but that is not where it ends,
                "it" being salvation.
                (1) That is where "it" begins.
                (2) Once we see ourselves as God sees us, it is time
                     for us to have a heart-to heart with Him!
            b. If you are lost, God is not interested in you trying
                to name all of your sins.
                (1) He already knows the full list.
                (2) You have no idea how many there are.
            c. He wants you to confess to Him that you are a sinner,
                unworthy of salvation.
            d. This is not salvation but it moves us closer to it.
        2. We need to confess that Jesus is God the Savior, come
            in the flesh.
            a. This would be third confession on the road to
            b. John makes much of this in His epistles.

1Jo 4:2  Hereby know ye the Spirit of God:
Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ
is come in the flesh is of God:

1Jo 2:23 Whosoever denieth the Son, the same
hath not the Father: (but) he that
ACKNOWLEDGETH the Son hath the
Father also.

1Jo 4:15 Whosoever shall confess that Jesus
is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and
he in God.

2Jo 1:7  For many deceivers are entered into
the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is
come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an

            c. Confessing that Jesus is who He said He was is still
                not salvation, but it is one of the early steps to
        3. We need to confess Jesus as our Savior and our Lord.
            a. This would be the fourth and final step to salvation.

Ro 10:9  That if thou shalt confess with thy
mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine
heart that God hath raised him from the dead,
thou shalt be saved.
10  For with the heart man believeth unto
righteousness; and with the mouth confession is
made unto salvation.

             b. Notice that sinners are not just to confess Jesus as
                 Savior, but as Lord also.
             c. That does not mean that they will be sinless.  It
                 means that they surrender.
             d. This is the equivalent of repentance.  It is a sinner
                 turning over control of his life to HIS Lord and
    C. As saved people, it is important that we confess our sins.
        1. Whereas confession is essential for the lost be saved, it
            has no bearing on the salvation of the saved.  That is,
            one does not lose his salvation because he does not
            confess his sins.
        2. However, it is important to the saved person’s fellowship
            with God.

Psalm 32:5  I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and
mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will
confess my transgressions unto the LORD; and thou
forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah.

Ps 38:18  For I will declare mine iniquity; I will
be sorry for my sin.

Ps 51:3  For I acknowledge my transgressions: and
my sin is ever before me.

        3. As the sinner and saved confess their sins for different
            purposes, so they confess them in a different manner.

1John 1:9  If we confess our sins, he is faithful
and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us
from all unrighteousness.

            a. As God convicts us of sin, we need to acknowledge that
                sin as sin.
            b. In other words, we actually do confess our individual
                sins to God, agree with Him that the act was sin, and
                ask God to forgive us.
            c. Someone asks, "What if I don’t remember them?"
                (1) Then you are waiting too long to repent of them!
                (2) Repentance for a Christian is not to come when we
                     have grown tired of our sin and are ready to let
                     it go, but when God tells us it is sin!
    D. As saved people, it is important that we confess to those we
        have sinned against our sins.
        1. There are many reasons for this.
            a. One is for our testimony’s sake.
                (1) When we sin against others and we know it, they
                     likely will too!
                (2) I read the story of a pastor who preached on
                     this topic and after a young man in the church
                     came forward and told the pastor that he was
                     under conviction for stealing from his boss but
                     had witnessed to him and could not confess his
                     sin to him or he would be judged a hypocrite.
                     The matter when on for a several days until the
                     man came back and told the pastor the matter was
                     "How so?" the pastor inquired.
                     "I told my boss what I had been doing, offered
                      to repay him, and now I have peace."
                     The pastor asked, "And how did your boss
                     The young man told him, He looked queerly at me,
                     then exclaimed, ‘I always did think you were
                     just a hypocrite, but now I begin to feel
                     there’s something in this Christianity after
                     all. Any religion that would make a dishonest
                     workman come back and confess that he had been
                     stealing and offer to settle for it, must be
                     worth having.’"

            b. But I believe it is also for our well being.

Psalm 32:3  When I kept silence, my bones waxed
old through my roaring all the day long.

James 5:16 Confess your faults one to another,
and pray one for another, that ye may be healed.
The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man
availeth much.

        2. The bottom line is that sin cannot be hid.
            a. God has promised to expose it.

Luke 12:2  For there is nothing covered, that
shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall
not be known.

            b. True story:

In 1884 Grover Cleveland was running against James G. Blaine for the
presidency of the U.S. Blaine supporters discovered that Cleveland,
who was a bachelor at the time, had fathered a son by Mrs. Maria
Crofts Halpin. Subsequently, they tried to pin an immorality tag on
Cleveland by distributing handbills on the topic and creating chants
to expose him. The move, however, backfired badly. Rather than deny
the story, Cleveland decided to tell the truth and admit the
intimacy. This candor helped defuse the issue, and Cleveland was
elected president.

    E. As saved people, it is important that we confess our Savior
        to others.  (That takes us back to our text.)

Psalms 107:2 Let the redeemed of the LORD say
so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the

        1. When the German army moved across France in the
            Franco-Prussian War, they passed through many
            villages. One of these villages went out to resist
            the Germans but they had only the megerest of
            weapons. One woman was seen heading down the road
            with nothing but her crutch.

            "Go back," one shouted at her. "They will think you

             "I don’t care!" she shouted swinging her crutch in
              the air. "I want them to know whose side I am on!"

        2. How can I make public what I believe?
            a. If you have the ability to speak, speak.
            b. Writing letters
            c. Carrying your Bible
            d. Saying grace at the table
            e. Being baptized
            f. Distributing tracts.

Confession is IMPORTANT!

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