Since the very first man and woman in the Garden of Eden, we have been trying to hide our sin and guilt from God. When God questioned them about their sin, Adam and Eve were quick to shift the blame and attempt to avoid the responsibility of their disobedience. To this day, not much has changed. You and I struggle with the same fallen sin nature.
The first reaction to our sin is to hide it. We deny it, minimize it, and try to reason it away. Moses buried the Egyptian that he murdered in the sand. Achan hid his plunder from Ai under his tent. Ananias and Sapphira hid the truth from the apostles, but Peter told them, "... thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God." (Acts 5:4) Which means that no matter who we may fool - including ourselves - God always knows the truth. He sees when no one else does. He even sees the secret places of our mind and thoughts. Proverbs 28:13a says, "He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: ...."
The second reaction to our sin is to shift blame. We blame our childhood, our circumstances, other people, even God Himself! Adam told God that is was, "... The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, ..." (Genesis 3:12) He was saying that if God had not given him his wife, then he would not have sinned. No matter what Eve chose to do, Adam had to take responsibility for his own actions.
While we are doing this hiding and blaming, we experience much guilt with mental and often physical torment. King David wrote, "When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long. For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer. Selah." (Psalm 32:3-4)
Once we realize that we cannot hide our sin since God already knows about it, and we cannot shift the blame for our actions since the responsibility is clearly ours, then true confession can take place. David continues, "I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the LORD; ..." (Psalm 32:5a). He no longer tried to hide it and took responsibility by calling it my sin, mine iniquity, my transgressions.
It is the rest of that verse that causes rejoicing: "... and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah." (Psalm 32:5b) Later in the same Psalm it says, "Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart." (Psalms 32:11) It is obvious that the restored fellowship David had with God after confessing his sin was the cause for great joy and rejoicing.
We can have the same thing in our lives. Scripture tells us, "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." (1 John 1:9) And "... whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy." (Proverbs 28:13b)
"And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full. This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin." (1 John 1:4-7)
Do not let your sin hinder your fellowship with God. Confess it to Him and rejoice in His mercy and forgiveness.
Written by Paul Sallmen