Senior Pastor Duane Mabee's weekly Pastor's Pondering can be read here, as seen in the printed church bulletin weekly.
Confession is Goodby Duane Mabee on February 11, 2021
If I said, “I have something I need to confess,” what do you anticipate about what I had to say next? Would you believe that we were about to have a positive conversation, or would you prepare for the worst? What if I said, “I think there is something you need to confess”? My guess is that your defenses would go up.
We view confession through an almost universally negative lens, at least if we are the ones required to confess. But confession is the pathway to blessing, peace, hope and restored relationship. We tend to believe that avoiding confession will allow us to avoid a host of negative things like rejection, discord, disrespect, etc. The refusal to confess, however, leads to far more damaging consequences.
In Psalm 32, David wrote:
Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.
Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit.
For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long.
For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer.
I acknowledged my sin to You, and I did not cover my iniquity;
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,” and You forgave the iniquity of my sin. (Ps 32:1-5 ESV)
David thought that hiding his sin would keep him from having to face the negative consequences, but it ended up making him miserable. He describes his situation as hurting at the core of his being. It kept him awake at night. It consumed his thoughts and wasted his energy. He couldn’t get his sin and its consequences off his mind. Refusing to confess produced every negative result he was trying to avoid and more.
Don’t miss the rest of what David says. The only way to get to freedom, peace, and restored relationship is through the path of confession. It was only when David acknowledged his sin, that the Lord forgave Him.
David was one of God’s people. He had a relationship with God, but that relationship was severely damaged by his sin, and it could only be restored through confession. It was only through confession that David could know how good it was to be forgiven.
We should read the lines; “Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit.” with an exuberant shout, not in a quiet, contemplative voice. But we should also understand that the way David got to that point was through confession.
The only way to know the blessing of being forgiven is to be forgiven, and the only way to be forgiven is through the path of confession and repentance. So, while confession may be painful, it is not negative. Confession is the pathway to blessing, peace, hope and restored relationship.