Chapter 11, Paragraph 5.
“God doth continue to Forgive the sins of those that are justified, and although they can never fall from the state of justification; yet they may by their sins fall under God’s Fatherly displeasure; and in that condition, they have not usually the light of his Countenance restored unto them, until they humble themselves, confess their sins, beg pardon, and renew their faith, and repentance.”
1 John 1:7,9
Slipping into sin is a sad reality for the Christian. It occurs too often, and we are reminded each time of how lacking in righteousness we are in our flesh. Is there ever a time that we finally cross the line, where God says “That’s it, I’m done here”? Does such sinning void the justification they have in Christ? With great joy and thankfulness we can shout NO! The elect can never fall from justification! God will always forgive our sins on account of Christ.There is no need to hold back from seeking His forgiveness, for He gives it freely.
There may be times, however, that we take His grace for granted, and do not humbly confess our wrongdoing. Distrust and pride can restrain our repentance. We may pridefully think we are above needing to confess, be hesitant to believe that He is faithful and will forgive us, or simply be unaware that there is any sin in our lives. At such times God may remove the light of His countenance from us. As Chapter 5, paragraph 5 of the Confession states, He may:
…leave His children to the corruptions of their own heart…that they may be humbled, to raise them to a more constant dependence upon Him, and to make them more watchful against future occasions of sin…
We must be ever ready to fight the temptation of unbelief, put aside our pride and come to Him in humility. Is it fun to do? No. But the alternative – remaining distant from Him who loves us and has justified us – is much worse. Don’t keep away from God. Freely confess and repent. He has forgiven you, and will continue to forgive.
Questions to Consider
- What keeps you from immediately and freely confessing your sin before God?