Passage of the Day: 1st John 1: 10 [see highlighted verse underlined and in bold] … 8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9If we confess our sins, He [God] is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make Him out to be a liar and His word has no place in our lives.
My Journal for Today: I agree with John MacArthur, from today’s Strength for Today, that there is a concerted effort in our post-modern culture to eradicate the concept of “sin” from our personal and cultural consciousness; and I’m afraid, by denial, that is also true in many of today’s churches. However, no human attempts to create a fog of denial can eliminate the truth that the evidence of sin is all around us, which began in the Garden of Eden (see Gen. 3: 11 – 13). That is why the Apostle John is so forceful and direct, exhorting Christians to “fess-up” to our sinfulness (above, as in 1st John 1: 8 – 10).
Today, MacArthur takes his devotional readers through a litany of heroes of the faith who recognized, some more easily than others, that confession and cleansing (see 1st John 1: 9) are essential to maintaining a right relationship with God. Many of you, right now as you read this, may be thinking of David, who needed Samuel’s help to unload his guilt (see 2nd Sam. 12: 13 and Ps. 51: 3 – 4). He had blinded himself in denial to his horrible sin; and he needed the eyes of a wiser believer, in the Prophet Samuel, to open his eyes to his (David’s) need for repentance and confession. One can also read Isaiah declaring his woeful sinfulness (in Isaiah 6: 5); and Daniel, who was such a man of Godly integrity; but he still confessed his sin nature (see Dan. 9: 20). In the New Testament, Peter, who after Pentecost became the leader of the Apostles, declared, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord!” (from Luke 5: 8) And of course, Paul, even after a life which powerfully honored God, labeled himself as the foremost of sinners (see 1st Tim. 1: 15).
So, all these men of God recognized what John ardently taught to us in 1st John 1: 9 … that the only way to be in God’s favor was to be cleansed by open and honest confession. Because, without that we deceive ourselves (1st John 1: 8) and actually label God to be a liar with our defense or denial (1st John 1: 10).
I, for one don’t want to be in that company. … Do you?
My Prayer Today: Cleanse me, O Lord, of my sinfulness – even this day. Amen