*this blog directly borrows from and adapts pieces of Thomas Watson’s The Doctrine of Repentance, 1668, Versa Press, Inc., East Peoria, IL (pp. 34-35)
1. Confession Glorifies God
The more we confess our sins to God and to others, the more we are reminded of our utter dependence on God and the amazing nature of his grace through Jesus Christ, and the more, in turn, we are led to give him praise. The more we live in this story, the better we can explain to others the grace of God – that he would bear with patient sinners such as ourselves – the more others will be drawn to his grace and led to worship him. “While we confess sin, God’s patience is magnified in sparing, and his free grace in saving such sinners.”
2. Confession Humbles the Believer
“Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.” (Matthew 23:12 ESV)
While much of Scripture can be confusing and is open to interpretation, some is not. I would argue that the most clear and obvious truth in Scriptures is that God hates pride, but loves humility. Confession is a beautiful way to foster a humble spirit and a humble mind. Without a clear understanding and belief in our sinful nature and in the grace of God, we revert immediately back to our prideful tendencies.
3.Confession Purges the Believer of Sin
Confession of sin to a brother or sister allows one to pursue a holy life more honestly and more effectively. “Many had rather have their sins covered than cured,” Watson says. The truth is that those who refuse to confess their sins love the darkness; they hate the light, for the light exposes their sin for what it is. If we come to the light, the light will expose our sins and offer grace to cover them. This grace will not only cover our sins, but it will transform us, the sinners, and eventually will purge the us of sin.
4.Confession Endears Christ to the Soul
“If I say I am a sinner, how precious will Christ’s blood be to me!” Without an understanding of sin, without a belief in sin, and without confession of sin, the most loving, gracious, incredible act of God in the history of the universe becomes trivial and unnecessary, or worse, evil. But when we see ourselves truly and accurately, when we understand our sin for what it is and ourselves for who we are, and only then look to the cross…we see the most amazing thing imaginable: we see the love of God for us in Jesus Christ. We see his love and we begin to grasp his love, a love which knows no bounds and cannot be restricted by anything.
“How is free grace magnified and Jesus Christ eternally loved and admired” when we confess our sins!