“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” – 1 John 1:9
A man wandered into a rural tent revival and was greatly inspired by the energetic service. One after another, people stood and poured out their hearts. After each person publicly confessed, the congregation cheered and clapped and wept tears of joy to show support for the repentant sinners. It wasn’t long before the man joined in, leaping to his feet and loudly confessing one of his more recent sins. The tent became suddenly silent as jaws dropped and eyes widened as big as saucers. The preacher leaned over and said, “Brother, I don’t think I would have told that one.”
Was the preacher right or wrong? That depends. Jesus clearly teaches that all sin needs to be confessed to God. Yet all sin doesn’t need to be confessed to men – just to those we have sinned against to ask their forgiveness.
The man at the tent revival was right not to sugarcoat any of his sin when it came to God. For God already knew what he’d done. And God wants you to fully confess so He’ll know that you know what you did! Don’t try to explain it away, or make excuses, or have a victim-mindset. You might be able to fool a friend, but you can’t fool God. Simply tell God about your sins and ask His forgiveness, and He will lift that burden from you. And when you wrong someone else, ask their forgiveness and seek to make things right. It may cost you, but it’s worth every penny.