If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:8-9
Coming to Christ is a liberating experience. I cannot pinpoint specifically what day I came to know the truth. What I can say however is that the same season I came to understand the gospels application to myself, I felt more free than I had ever been.
What must always be noted is that this experience is just the start of what should be a maturing process. This is a process that we go through for the rest of our lives. We come to know the truth and now must set our focus on one who is greater than ourselves.
I have been a believer my entire life, but can honestly say that the gospel only first made sense to me when I turned the age of 19. Now, I’m 27 and I have already backslidden once in this 8 year period. How so? Because in spite of officially giving my life to Christ in 2013, I reached a point of my desires being challenged. I may have understood the gospel. But when life became inconvenient, I struggled to give thanks and justified ungodly behavior.
It’s not wrong to say that the biggest challenge for any believer is saying “I am wrong.” I have struggled to acknowledge my failures in these last four years and even struggle sometimes to this day. Sin is such an easy thing for us to try and justify. Even as believers, we can become so caught up in what appeals to our interests, that we fail to consider our own weaknesses.
What I love about the opening verse is that it does not leave us hopeless. Instead, it confronts us with the truth about ourselves. We are wrong if we claim to have not sin in our hearts. Nonetheless, when we confess those sins, God will not condemn us. Instead, he will cleanse and forgive us of what we have done wrong.
By Andrew Inman