Confession is not for you.

One of the misinterpreted verses of scripture is 1 John 1:9.

That is that you must confess your sins for God to forgive you.

This is what it says.

1 John 1:9

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

Now let’s look at the context and audience John was directing this.

Let’s start from the top.

1 John 1:1-3

That which was from the beginning, which we have HEARD, which we have SEEN with our eyes, which we have LOOKED at and our HANDS have TOUCHED —this we proclaim concern the Word of life. The LIFE appeared; we have SEEN it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has APPEARED to us. We proclaim to you what we have SEEN and HEARD, so that you also may have FELLOWSHIP with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ.

Notice 2 things.

1. The emphasis on the bodily senses. Seen. Heard. Touched. Life. Appeared.

2. The audience were not in fellowship with John and his church.

Now I want you to see this. Within the same letter.

1 John 4:1-3

Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many FALSE PROPHETS have gone out into the world. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the FLESH is from God, but every spirit that DOES NOT acknowledge Jesus IS NOT from God. This is the spirit of the ANTICHRIST, which you have heard IS coming and even NOW is already in the world.

Now you realize John was referring to people who deny that Jesus came in the flesh. That is Jesus did not come in bodily form.

He also said that this teaching was coming and had already been spreaders around. He called the people spreading this the antichrist.

More important. It has appeared in John’s generation. Not OURS.

So what was John referring to?

Cerinthus.

The following is an excerpt of wikipedia:

“Contrary to the Church Fathers, he used the Gospel of Cerinthus, and denied that the Supreme God made the physical world.In Cerinthus’ interpretation, the Christ descended upon Jesus at baptism and guided him in ministry and the performing of miracles, but left him at the crucifixion.”

In other words. Jesus is not the Christ. He was only the host occupying the Christ.

You see he was the father of the Gnostics, a movement which was beginning then. Not now.

Gnostics teach that everything physical is evil and everything of the spirit is good and pure. As such they taught since Jesus was flesh and blood, he could not have been the Christ. Christ as such was a spirit and not flesh, or a human being.

Now do you understand why he wrote this?

1 John 4:1-3

Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many FALSE PROPHETS have gone out into the world. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the FLESH is from God, but every spirit that DOES NOT acknowledge Jesus IS NOT from God. This is the spirit of the ANTICHRIST, which you have heard IS coming and even NOW is already in the world.

John said he touched him. He saw him. He heard him. He walked with him. He ate with him.

Also it was in John’s gospel that the account of Thomas touching him was emphasized.

John 20:27-28

Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”

Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”

This account specifically appears in John. This is because John wrote his gospel to rebuke the Gnostics.

So who was John writing to in 1 John 1:9?

NOT YOU.

You have been forgiven ONCE. Not over and over again.

Hebrews 10:10-12

And by that will, we HAVE BEEN made HOLY through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ ONCE FOR ALL.

Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. BUT when this priest had offered for ALL TIME one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God,

Hebrews said this about asking for forgiven over and over:

Hebrews 10:2

Otherwise, would they not have stopped being offered? For the worshipers would have been cleansed ONCE FOR ALL, and would no longer have felt guilty for their sins.

What then was the requirement of having to ask for forgiveness over and over?

Hebrews 10:1

The LAW is only a shadow of the good things that are coming—not the realities themselves. For this reason THE LAW can never, by the same sacrifices repeated endlessly year after year, make perfect those who draw near to worship.

So, you see. 1 John 1:9 is not directed to you.

So.

Please.

Stop asking God to do what he has already done for you.

You are already perfectly holy.

You are already forgiven.

You don’t have to forgive other people to be forgiven. That was before Jesus died.

This is what happened after Jesus died.

Ephesians 4:32

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God FORGAVE you.

YOU FORGIVE BECAUSE YOU ARE FORGIVEN. NOT TO BE FORGIVEN.

Enjoy your Sunday. Enjoy your forgiveness. Enjoy your righteousness. Enjoy Christ in you.

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