CONFESSION

ALL OR NOTHING

Screen Shot 2016-08-23 at 3.35.24 PM…FATHER, You stand firm and are immoveable as You refine Your chosen and cast out the wicked (Gal 4:30). There are no gray areas with You. It’s either yes, no—black or white.

You are serious about separating the righteous from the unrighteous. Aaron, in his lenience, allowed the people to break lose into unruliness and worship the golden calf (Ex 32). But, You led Moses to separate the people by saying, “…’Who is on the LORD’s side? Come to me’…” (Ex 32:26 ESV). And, in that situation, You equipped the Levites who came to Moses then to turn and kill the ones who did not come—even making them able to kill their brothers, companions, or neighbors (Ex 32:27). This certainly is a sobering account of Your seriousness about separating Your people from the rest of the world.

Today Your HOLY SPIRIT is creating “in CHRIST’s bride an overwhelming desire for holiness, purity, and revelation” David Wilkerson (ref#138, p165). FATHER, You want “a free people, a remnant totally detached from all that is earthly…” David Wilkerson (ref#138, p164).

You remind me of Your seriousness in “the parable of the pearl of great value.” You have allowed me to find the pearl above all pearls—CHRIST. But, I confess, I do not go out and sell everything that I may be able to fully possess that greatest pearl (Matt 13:45-46).

I satisfy myself with You occasionally. My love for You changes with circumstances. Remind me of Your intolerance to sin. Do I “think for one moment Christ will take to Himself a contaminated, lust-bound bride” David Wilkerson (ref#138, p37)? I need to be more serious about pursuing CHRIST.

I do not want to play with fire. It’s all or none—sold out or not. O LORD, “…please show me now your ways, that I may know you in order to find favor in your sight….” (Ex 33:13 ESV).

CONFESSION

I SIN KNOWINGLY BUT NOT WILLFULLY

Screen Shot 2016-07-19 at 5.19.25 AM…FATHER, I grieve especially over the sins I commit knowing full well I’m disobeying You. Can You forgive me for such in-Your-face, blatant, rebellion?

The book of Leviticus describes sacrifices for sins. But the sacrifices are only for unintentional sins (Lev 4:2). The writer of Hebrews says: “…if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,” (Heb 10:26 NKJV).

Yet, I, as well as other Christians, knowingly sin—even King David prayed that You keep him back from “…presumptuous sins…(Ps 19:13 NASB). FATHER, help me understand that I may sin knowingly, as King David did but that does not mean I sin willfully. Sinning willfully means sinning willingly. Sinning willingly means I sin out of my own glad choice with no intention of repenting. Adam Clarke’s Commentary brings meaning to Hebrews 10:26:

“A man may be overtaken in a fault, or he may deliberately go into sin, and yet neither renounce the Gospel, nor deny the Lord that bought him.” Adam Clarke’s Commentary (ref#15, [Heb 10:26]). But, “if we sin willfully] If we deliberately…renounce the profession of the Gospel and the Author of that Gospel,…the…case must be utterly without remedy.” (ref#15, [Heb 10:26]).

When I do sin deliberately, my “case is dreary and dangerous but it is not hopeless; no case is hopeless but that of the deliberate apostate who rejects the whole Gospel system,…” (ref#15, [Heb 10:26]). And, all thanks to You, FATHER, that You have cemented in my heart never to reject the Gospel.

How I thank You, FATHER, that You give me the grace of confession. Yes, You have put in my heart the desire to repent. You have closed the gate behind me. Because You have made me Yours, I will never again sin willfully.

Though FATHER, drive me to fear sinning against You deliberately. Such actions remove me from Your presence. My iniquities always make a separation between You and me. My sins hide Your face so that You do not hear me (Isa 59:2).

LORD, I take hold of Your grace of repentance and use it to bring myself back into Your presence. And, FATHER, during this activity of repentance, sober me into remembering that even though I will never sin willfully, sinning knowingly is dreary and dangerous.

CONFESSION

PARDON IS NOT TO MAKE ME MORE ACCEPTABLE TO GOD

Screen Shot 2016-05-18 at 11.13.44 AM…LORD, as I approach Your throne, my natural reaction is to cry out like Isaiah, “I have unclean lips” (Isa 6:5), and so desire to spill out my confessions of sin before I come close to You.

In the prayer JESUS taught His disciples, the first half of it is words of worship and honor to You. Confession of sin is toward the end of the prayer and then takes up only ½ a sentence.

Remind me FATHER, You do not throw the robe of CHRIST upon me so You can tolerate looking at me. You do not demand I confess my sin before You let me approach You. You know my frame (Ps 103:14) and my sinfulness does not give You pause.

A woman may forget she is nursing a child, but You will never forget me. You engraved me on the palm of Your hands (Isa 49:15,16) before I did anything right or wrong (Rom 9:11).

You seek and solicit my love constantly. You love me at the expense of Your Son’s blood—at the expense of condescending to beseech me (ref#18, [1 John 4:18]). Have You not rend the heavens and come down to be constantly beside me (Isa 64:1)? You are willing to call me Your bride even when I am unfaithful to You (Hosea 3:1).

I have mistaken thoughts about confession! My natural thought is to dwell on Your assurance of pardon to convince myself that I am now good enough to come into Your presence. FATHER, remind me once again that I am good only because CHRIST has made me His own, not because I have confessed my sins and received Your pardon.

Isn’t this what Job was so upset about—justifying himself before You? Job wanted You to speak to him about his sin—or lack thereof. Did You do that? No, You instead overwhelmed Job with Your majesty (Job 38:1-41:34).

Astonish me like You did Job. I want to spend the majority of my time with You losing myself in Your love.

“…if the heart be…much taken up with…the eminency of the Father’s love, it cannot choose but be overpowered, conquered, and endeared unto him” John Owen (ref#35, p128).

CONFESSION

TWO ENTITIES–DEPRAVED FLESH AND THE SPIRIT

Screen Shot 2016-05-17 at 2.21.40 PM…FATHER, when I bow my knee and ask You to search me for sin clue me that I set two entities into motion: my natural, depraved flesh searches for sin as well as Your SPIRIT Roy and Revel Hession (ref#100, p83). Flesh brings to my mind unrighteous actions that I’ve committed; the SPIRIT reveals my unrighteous motives.

The search engine of natural flesh only finds obvious willful sins of rebellion—one or two unholy deeds. These are the sins I feel I can correct myself, with better effort.

The search engine of the SPIRIT scans the heart and finds innate rebellion—obstinate roots imbedded in my very character.

The SPIRIT brings my real fleshly self to my attention, while flesh overlooks itself and attempts to change bad actions. Flesh will not believe that its very self is bad. Therefore, FATHER, “I fall short of the purity thou requires because in thinking I am holy I do not see holiness, or, believing I am impotent, I do no more” The Valley of Vision (ref#76, p96).

Motivate me to stay on my knees past admitting a few recent sins. For if I consider my confession done I will have only met with my self—my depraved flesh—and not with Your SPIRIT. My flesh will only prompt me to deal with my symptoms not my sickness.

I wish to be obedient to You, FATHER, and wait until a thought enters my mind that requires more than my own efforts to correct.

I thank You, SPIRIT, that You will not only convict, but also correct as You give me solid directions to work beside You for accomplishing the correction. Yes, how I thank You for not only directing but also I thank You for changing my very nature day by day making me able to obey Your commands.

FATHER, in my routine of confession prompt me please to warn myself to not stumble over JESUS, the rock of offense (Rom 9:33) by listening to my flesh and attempting to eradicate sin by working at it in my own strength. Direct me to stumble onto JESUS. For He, working through the SPIRIT, is the only One able to make me righteous. FATHER, increase my faith, not my abilities (Rom 9:30-33).

SUPPLICATION

NON CHRISTIAN Resisters

[We all have friends and family that do not want anything to do with Christianity so it is up to us to pray for their salvation. Here’s an opportunity to pray for them. Fill their name in the blanks.]

NONCHALANT ATTITUDE

Screen Shot 2016-05-16 at 1.24.38 PM…FATHER, because there is salvation in no one but Your Son, JESUS (Acts 4:12), I humbly and respectfully come to ask Your favor. You have decreed that some will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction away from Your presence forever (2 Thes 1:9). ____, I fear is unconcerned about (his/her) eternal home being now only concerned about the works of (his/her) hands (Jer 1:16). (He/She) has set a high value upon this present age and thus has come to love it (ref#37, p506, [2 Tim 4:10]).

“No room for Jesus?…This is the answer that millions are giving today.  It is the answer of preoccupation—not fierce opposition, not furious hatred, but unconcern about spiritual things….God is still on the fringes of most of our lives. We fit Him in when it is convenient for us, but we become irritated when He makes demands on us. Our lives are so full. There is so much to be done….” Billy Graham (ref#120, p20).

The dread of You is not in ____ (Jer 2:19). (He/She) does not consciously disobey You, (he/she) simply does not heed You. (He/She) does not pay attention to You, not because of willful disobedience but because (he/she) does not love or respect You (ref#7, Feb 12th).

(His/Her) nonchalant actions prove (he/she) does not know You. FATHER, please place the fear of You in (him/her). Cause (his/her) spirit to comprehend Your SPIRIT.

FATHER, (he/she) has probably unknowingly set (himself/herself) in opposition to You. I pray for (his/her) repentance with a result of a precise, experiential knowledge of the truth. May (he/she) return to soberness out of the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him (ref#37, p504, [2 Tim 2:25-26]).

CONFESSION

DISCIPLINE

Screen Shot 2016-03-14 at 3.37.53 PM…FATHER, lead me to the correct understanding of discipline so I may not only appreciate it but joy in it. My first thought when You present me with a painful, difficult, situation is that You are punishing me because You think I should know better.

I am quite aware that I commit many and varied sins, but I don’t need discipline because I’m a sinner, I need to be disciplined because I’m human (ref#5, p40). It is my prideful humanity You are attempting to root out of me; You are not attempting to discourage me from a particular sin.

Keep reminding me Your reproof is an indication that You care enough to teach me (Job 5:17). Certainly at the moment all discipline is painful rather than pleasant but it yields the fruit of righteousness (Heb 12:11).

FATHER, I will praise You because You discipline me in just measure (Jer 30:11). You promise I can always endure whatever circumstances You put me in (1 Cor 10:13). You are with me to save me (Jer 30:11). You give me power to keep myself calm in the days of adversity (Ps 94:13). Enduring the disciplinary trial proves my faith and produces perseverance and steadfastness and patience (James 1:3).

FATHER, commit to my understanding the fact that You issue discipline because You love me (Heb 12:6). When I go astray You call me back to You with discipline. Your steadfast love will not depart from me (2 Sam 7:14-15). You will not be false to Your faithfulness, nor violate Your covenant or alter the word that goes forth from Your lips (Ps 89:33-34). You chasten and scourge me because You cherish me (Heb 12:6).

“Divine love chastens because it sees the necessity for the correction. The Lord’s love is not blind affection…. It is our mercy to know that love marks our iniquity, and that love and not justice, grace and not vengeance, holds the rod and administers the correction….those stripes of His rod are as much…the expression of His love as are the ‘kisses of His mouth’…” Octavius Winslow (ref#61, Jan 16th).

Submitting to Your discipline is good for me so I may share in Your holiness (Heb 12:10). I desire to be trained by it because it yields peaceful righteousness for me (Heb 12:11). Thank You for Your discipline.

CONFESSION

MY FLESH DIED WITH CHRIST

Screen Shot 2016-02-25 at 10.28.32 AM…FATHER, because I have died—that is my flesh has died—that is my selfish disposition, let me set my mind on things above (Col 3:2-3). Since I am dead to sin and the world (ref#16, [Col 3:5]), my life now is hidden with CHRIST in You, FATHER (Col 3:3). I am with CHRIST in the glories of His kingdom (ref#16, [Col 3:5]), therefore, remind me that my job is to keep everything that remains of my earthy life subdued (ref#16, [Col 3:5]), i.e. my selfish nature.

I must make a habit of becoming sensitive to flesh’s continual attempt at resurrection. I must be aware of my selfishness, and be ready to lock arms with CHRIST and confront the temptation, which is to do what I want to.

Remind me, LORD, to assess how powerful and desperate my old disposition is to rule me. Flesh desires to live forever just as satan does and satan is behind it’s power. Flesh is a formidable foe that I cannot come close to defeating with my own strength. In fact, my own strength doesn’t even want to defeat flesh.

A short time away from You and Your Word will make me think I alone, in the strength of my flesh, can handle temptation as well as represent You adequately. But, the power outflowing from CHRIST’s resurrection is more than enough to subdue any fleshly work, yet, let my mind drift away from You, and flesh is instantly able to go on a rampage, for it never takes no for an answer (ref#33, p101). Letting the SPIRIT lead out is of the utmost, for it is by the HOLY SPIRIT I am able to keep the deeds of my flesh dead (Rom 8:13).

With my desire to keep my flesh dead and the SPIRIT’s power to accomplish that, is how I can live a victorious life. O FATHER, remind me to be constantly vigilant. Flesh always serves the law of sin; it will never change (ref#33, p102).

SPIRIT, apply the finished work on the cross to me continually, for my flesh is dead only if I keep it subdued. My selfish nature is always ready to break forth to rule at any moment. I plead to be led by You, SPIRIT.

SUPPLICATION

NON CHRISTIAN, RESISTERS

[We all have friends and family that do not want anything to do with Christianity so it is up to us to pray for their salvation. Here’s an opportunity to pray for them. Fill their name in the blanks.]

BACKSLIDERS CAN BE RESTORED

Screen Shot 2016-01-28 at 12.31.23 PM…FATHER, You restore souls (Ps 23:3). You convert a “soul from sin that it may not eternally perish” Adam Clarke (ref#15, [Ps 23:3]). You bring back life from destruction, heal backsliders, and restore them to Your favor (ref#15, [Ps 23:3]).

“He breaks down the hard heart, arrests the soul in its onward progress of departure, places upon it some powerful check, lays it low….” Octavius Winslow (ref#61, Sept 1st).

FATHER, I plead to You for the same power You used to initially draw ____ to take up again Your work in ____’s heart (ref#61, Sept 1st). Even though (he/she) presently plows a wicked way, reaps a crop of evil, and eats a salad of lies (Hos 10:13), You will kindly give (him/her) another chance to turn (himself/herself) around again.

It is encouraging to know that since ____ is not in the pit of hell, (he/she) is on the ground of mercy and that You, FATHER, see a way for (him/her) to escape when I see none. I will depend on You and call on You for You only give a promise of deliverance (ref#124, p89-90).

CONFESSION

GOD IS BOTH JUST AND JUSTIFIER

Screen Shot 2016-01-28 at 12.15.28 PMWhat do I do with my guilt? FATHER, I am to be perfect as You are perfect (Matt 5:48)! Since I was born in Your image (Gen 1:26) the deepest desire of my heart is to live with You, but I don’t do the things I know I should do (Rom 7:15). I disappoint and have no ability to clear my own name before You (Rom 3:23). I just can’t always do what I know is right—sometimes I can, but not all the time. And You demand that I be perfect… (Matt 5:48).

But, what I could not do, You did (Isa 52:10).   Since You require justice, You, Yourself, must be the justifier (Rom 3:26). And this You did, all on Your own, without any help from me. So, You are both just and the One who brings justice.

Even though I am a sinner (Rom 5:8), You confer—You reckon—You count me as righteous (Rom 4:22). You consider me righteous when I am a sinner. You pronounce sinners righteous! You don’t change me so I am righteous, but You “pronounce” me righteous.

FATHER, You give the free gift of a right standing before You because of what Your Son JESUS did. I am drawn into Your favor because You have accepted the blood of Your Son in His death to soothe Your anger for all my sins—past, present, and future (Rom 3:25).

CHRIST’s dying on the cross does not automatically defuse Your anger toward every sinner.   You confer righteousness only upon sinners who support Your way of reconciliation—who believe CHRIST provides the only way to make peace with You—in contrast to believing that any efforts on my part has any power at all for my justification (Rom 3:28).

“Sinful men and women can be changed into new creatures, not by their repentance or their belief, but by the marvelous work of God in Christ Jesus which is prior to all experience…I am not saved by believing; I realize I am saved by believing. It is not repentance that saves me, repentance is the sign that I realize what God has done in Christ Jesus. The danger is to put the emphasis on the effect instead of on the cause” (ref#7, Oct 28th).

CONFESSION

TO THE PRAISE OF HIS GLORY

Screen Shot 2016-01-28 at 9.30.40 AM…FATHER, a blade of grass fulfills its created purpose—it is a praise to Your glory. You intend Your “grace and power and other perfections should…become conspicuous and illustrious” Matthew Henry (ref#18, [Eph 1:3-14]). And Your intention is that I magnify You (ref #18, [Eph 1:3-14]).

Praise is ascribed to You for the salvation You have granted to me (ref#16, [Eph 1:12]). When I let You work through me, You get the praise. All I have to do is follow You where You place me. FATHER, prevent me from placing myself (ref#83, p51).

I am tempted to ask You to help me be like CHRIST thinking others will see the goodness of You in me and praise You. But this is just a prideful request from my self-exalting nature. Another prideful request is for You to help me become more passionate for souls, but concentrating on saving souls is just religious commercialism (ref#83, p51).

Again, all I have to do is to follow You where You place me. When I am following You it will be a matter of indifference whether You put me in the spotlight or back stage. As long as I’m following You I can be unfairly accused or even be proven a failure without any irritation on my part (ref#83, p51).

CHRIST was a praise to Your glory. But, He was not obedient to His needs or the needs of men but obedient to Your will. Because of it, He was a ‘stone of stumbling’ to many people and I will be a ‘stone of stumbling’ by following Him (ref#83, p50-51).

Move me to realize that You have to be followed, I cannot clutch visions of grandeur that I become a beautiful specimen in Your showcase. I will reflect honor to You when I follow You in the mundane circumstances of life. (ref#83, p 53).

How difficult is following? FATHER, help me keep it simple. When I begin to question which way to go, sin has complicated my walk. Sin urges me to involve myself in activities that go beyond Your wishes and my abilities. The sin in me desires to do great spiritual things—things that will wear me out and make me frustrated and sad. Urge me to keep it simple and just walk behind You for the praise of Your glory.