I have been discussing the subject of confession lately and most of my friends do not, as you read before, stand where I am standing now. Somehow I get the notion that God forgivess our sins when we confess and the basis of that forgiveness is that confession of sins - the famous passage is of course 1 John 1:9. You can quote this, so I won't.
This got me thinking, I had a strange suspicion ,so, does God forgive me because I confessed? Hmmm, so God forgives me because I have done the "work" of confessing? I went back again to 1 John and before that famous passage we read verse 7. Check it out.
I conclude, NO. God indeed forgives me when I confess, but I am not forgiven because of that confession of sins, I am being forgiven because Jesus died for the sins I am confessing. There is no way that God can forgive me simply on the basis of my confession. No way.
His forgiveness for me is never separated from the work of His Son - Jesus at the Cross. Once things get separated from Jesus' cross, all spiritual activity are turned into a form of works. Works will never make you secure.
I conclude too that the reason why God answers my prayer, in fact any prayer of anyone given in Christ's name is because Jesus purchased for me (and you) the good standing God requires from man.
So how does it feel to always be helpless and hopeless without the Cross of Christ? Very uneasy because it makes you always dependent on Christ, there is none of you that you can bring on God's table. The human mind rebels against that.
It makes you always in debt, and none of us likes that.
Uneasy? Maybe, but secure and happy. I am guaranteed to be forgiven because Scripture declares, Jesus purchased God's attention for me, at the Cross. He will answer my prayer not on the basis that I deserve anything - that is good news, that is a good thing, He answers on the basis that Jesus got God's attention for me -- and you too!
Back to thesis writing...