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Confession is so very important in the bible both before God (1 John 1:9) and before your peers (Jam. 5:16). Confession returns a person to the correct camp. For example, when your spouse comes to you and says to you "I'm sorry when I'm around my family and join them in acting disrespectful and/or unloving toward you". Prior to an honest confession it was you vs them and their sin. When they confess, it becomes you and them vs sin. You see what happened there? Confession not only moved them back into your camp, but by so doing, they disowned their sin, thus divorcing themselves from it altogether. In terms of camps (not necessarily consequences) it's no longer their sin.


This is the same thing when we agree with the law of God in our inner being. Paul wrote "For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate" (Rom. 7:15-16). This same argument could be made by the spouse above to their mate. But then Paul continues "So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me." Paul is making it very clear that a person who concurs with the right thing to do and hates when they do not do it, has therefore been removed from the camp of sin as if they were in cahoots with it, to a person who has, by denouncing their sin (i.e. confession), been transferred to the camp that is in cahoots with God and His decrees. Therefore Paul said, such person's present situation has become God and them vs sin whereas before it was God vs them and their sin.


Confession then is not just exposing sin, but it's revealing an allegiance to righteousness (Rom. 10:9-10). Such people are easy to identify. They are wearisome with themselves, exhausted from a fight they can't win, and running from a person they don't want to be and yet can't escape. Jesus actually calls out specifically to these type of people when He said "Come to Me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest (Mat. 11:28). He then gives instructions to those who come to Him, "Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls" (Mat. 10:29). A yoke is a construct that would bind two animals together, usually oxen such as those pulling a cart, in order that the oxen would be in unison, pulling together the same direction, headed the same way. To be yoked with Christ is to be yoked to an Oxen so big you're feet don't touch the ground.


That's the beautiful thing. While we're in the camp of hating our sin, yet we're powerless to do anything about it. Now this would be a significant problem if we were likewise expected to deal with it ourselves. But we're not in a camp where responsibilities are distributed evenly, we're in a camp where the full weight of the responsibility rests entirely on Jesus who's very Name means "He will save His people from their sins." (Mat. 1:21b). While Christ get the glory for winning the war against sin and pulling the full weight of the requirement of the law, we who are in His camp share in the spoils (Col. 1:12); we who are yoked with Him are glorified as if we had done it (Mat. 5:17, 2 Cor. 5:21, Rom. 8:17). Jesus actually put Himself in our camp in order to win our war for us. "Though He was rich, yet for your sake He became poor, so that you through His poverty might become rich." (2 Cor. 8:9). Jesus came down the mountain, hooked Himself up to the heavy cart of our burden (Mat. 5:48, 1 Pet. 1:21), invites us to ride with Him (Mat. 11:29-30), and pulls it up the steep mountain. Your legs dangle the entire way, yet when you arrive the Father high-five's you both (Isa. 61:10).


So why is confession so important? Because it's the condition.


If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.


God knows we can't fix ourselves. Even Paul acknowledged our helplessness when He cried out "Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?" (Rom. 7:24). But notice no part of the above verse requires us to do the fixing, we can't, only that we are to give an honest confession, thus aligning ourselves with God and unlocking the latter half of the verse containing God's glorious promise to not only forgive us, but to completely cleanse us as well. The fact is our flesh will never stop serving the law of sin (Rom. 7:25, Eph. 4:22, Gal. 5:16). There is not a single person in our camp who doesn't have sin still warring in their members (Rom. 7:23, Gal. 5:17), and it's as wretched in them as it is in you. Paul, in the latter verses of Romans 7 is sitting across from us at the fire nodding his head as if to signify his inclusion in that wretchedness as well. He then leans over to Timothy next to him to argue that he's the worst (1 Tim. 1:15), pointing out to all of us that if God can do it for him, than there's nobody beyond His grace (1 Tim. 1:16).


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