CONFESSION

SATAN STANDS BEFORE GOD AND ACCUSES ME

Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 12.57.35 PM…FATHER, it bothers me greatly that satan stands before You and accuses me day and night (Rev 12:10). Even though he hates Your presence, he is willing to appear before You to accuse me (ref#18, [Rev 12:1-11]). And his accusations are true! He lies to me but speaks truth to You. Day and night—continually, he gives me a bad name before You—day and night! How is it that You can 24-7 insist on loving me against all the facts?

This prosecutor, satan, has the evidence to convict me and I have no arguments in my defense for I do go through each day sinning just as he says. It is an absolute necessity to have CHRIST represent me. Impress upon me the seriousness of my inability to stop sinning and the seriousness of depending on CHRIST. By the “blood of the Lamb” You, FATHER, set me free (Rev 12:11). You cast satan out of Your court, crushing his indictments (ref#18, [Rev 12:1-11]).

So, I commit my cause to CHRIST, my Advocate (ref#18, [Rev 12:1-11]). In confession, CHRIST, You are my Savior; and because You are my Savior I gladly make You my LORD.

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CONFESSION

TOTALLY DEPRAVED DOES NOT MEAN TOTALLY CORRUPT

Screen Shot 2016-07-18 at 4.54.51 PM…FATHER, R.A. Torrey gives me reason to check myself to see if my good works come from my relationship with JESUS or my depraved nature. He says:

“The doctrine that man is totally depraved does not mean that he is totally corrupt….while seeking to please himself, a man may do things that are morally attractive and beautiful….He is as truly depraved as the man who chooses the immoral things, but his tastes are not as corrupt…” R. A. Torrey (ref#30, p62,63).

John Owen further identifies depravity:

“…persons who know not Christ…would spin a holiness out of their own bowels; they would work it out in their own strength. They begin by trying endeavors; and follow it with vows, duties, resolutions, engagements, sweating at it all the day long….” (ref#35, p333).

The Apostle Paul laments over his sisters and brothers of Israel who spin their own holiness. He says:

“I know what enthusiasm they have for God, but it is misdirected zeal.  For they don’t understand God’s way of making people right with  himself. Refusing to accept God’s way, they cling to their own way of getting right with God by trying to keep the law” (Rom 10:2-3 NLT).

It can be easy to find pride in being moral—self-ordering activities toward righteousness. Take my eyes off CHRIST and I’ll fall into striving to be good. I know my righteousness is only through the SPIRIT by faith (Gal 5:5). FATHER, I want to stay with the SPIRIT.

Bring me to examine my own enthusiasm for You. Am I joyful and content being in fellowship with CHRIST and enthusiastic about His agenda? Or is it satisfying enough to just choose and accomplish good works. Help me search my heart, LORD, do I really love You or do I simply love to appear righteous?

CONFESSION

BELIEF MORE THAN BEHAVIOR

Screen Shot 2016-05-17 at 3.10.35 PM…FATHER, I desire to be more concerned about my beliefs than my behavior. The enemy would lead me to focus on my behavior—my poor behavior. He is forever reminding me of my sins—trying to convince me that I am “unworthy, unacceptable, sin-sick” who will never amount to anything in Your eyes (ref#14, p 57). Yet, at the same time, he encourages me to work harder at being better.

Your intention is that I confess, forsake the sin, and quickly move on with You. But, I have trouble moving on with You when my attention is on changing sinful behavior. Help me, LORD to dwell on my beliefs and not my behavior.

“I have been justified—completely forgiven and made righteous (Rom 5:1)” Neil Anderson (ref#14, p57). Because of CHRIST’s work sin no longer has dominion over me (Rom 6:14). I have passed out of sin as truly as the dead man has passed out of life (Rom 6:2). I have been placed into CHRIST by Your doing, FATHER (1 Cor 1:30). “…The life I am now living is Christ’s life (Gal 2:20)” (ref#14, p58). “…I am sanctified and am one with the Sanctifier, He is not ashamed to call me brother (Heb 2:11)” (ref#14, p59).

Admittedly, the below is also true:

  • I, along with everyone else, do not understand or seek You (Ps 53:2).
  • I, along with everyone else, corrupt my own way (Gen 6:12).
  • I, along with everyone else, have fallen away and am dishonest (Ps 53:3).
  • I, along with everyone else, do not do good (Ps 53:3).
  • I, along with everyone else, have a heart filled with destruction and do not speak truth (Ps 5:9).

FATHER, continually aid me to always perceive the truth about my perpetual sinful condition then turn immediately to rest with CHRIST on His accomplishments. He is the upright One who instructs and teaches me (Ps 25:8-9). I walk in His faithfulness, not in my faithfulness (Ps 26:3). May I seek joy in CHRIST alone, not in any good feelings I may get by improving my behavior.

CONFESSION

 

HOLLERING HELP

Screen Shot 2016-05-16 at 12.02.07 PM…FATHER, forgive me for allowing my natural thoughts to ravish my body. I know I can’t successfully navigate my circumstances so I worry, and worry hurts me instead of helps. O LORD, turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am afflicted.

The troubles of my heart are multiplied; bring me out of my distresses (Ps 25:16-17). I need You to lead me toward taking control of my mind; give me the wherewithal to renew it (Rom 12:1,2)—stopping natural thought and turning toward You.

I admit my lack of strength in my present circumstances (Ps 71:9). In the multitude of Your mercy and the abundance of Your loving-kindness, hear me and answer me. Rescue me, do not let me sink, I plead (Ps 69:13-15).

In You, I take refuge. In Your righteousness deliver me and liberate me; incline Your ear to me, and save me. Be to me a shelter to which I may continually come, for You are my fortress (Ps 71:1-3).

My human mind attempts to accomplish its will with brute strength, but LORD, I ask You to strengthen me by Your SPIRIT so that my strength is accomplished with no physical exhaustion but with spiritual strength that is a glorious inner strength (Eph 3:16).

LORD, I know You will not restrain Your mercy from me; Your streafast love and Your faithfulness will ever preserve me (Ps 40:11). You say in Isaiah 41:10 that You will strengthen and harden me to difficulties, yes, You will help me. You will hold me up and retain me with Your victorious right hand. Because You are my help, I will meditate on the glorious splendor of Your majesty, and on Your wondrous works (Ps 145:5). Help me now set my thoughts on all You have done for me.

All Your deeds, LORD, are awesome. They pour forth the fame of Your abundant goodness; they sing aloud of Your righteousness (Ps 145:6-7). What hope and peace Your Words have brought to me. What joy they will always bring, for CHRIST is eternal and my renewed mind is a result of being dead to sin and alive in CHRIST—a position that You graciously and freely give me (Rom 6:9-11).

I will attest with vigor—my peace comes by being alive in CHRIST. I can do all things by being in CHRIST who strengthens me (Phil 4:13).

CONFESSION

 

SIN DOES NO PERMANENT DAMAGE

Screen Shot 2016-05-14 at 2.07.49 PM…FATHER, I know sin has consequences, but it does no permanent damage. Sin has put me in shambles; I am like the rubble of a building but through my acceptance of CHRIST’s work on the cross the HOLY SPIRIT will purify and refine me back into a building gloriously enough for You to dwell in. No matter how horrific my sin or how horrific someone has sinned again me, You provide the way for my whole soul to be restored (ref#15, [Acts 9:31]).

Sin is a past issue with You. And, it may be too, with me, once I roll the situation over to You. To nullify sin’s damage, LORD, You require, by faith, I prove CHRIST conquered sin by putting the incident behind me, as You have put it behind You. Yes, I may deal with a consequence of sin everyday but it does not need to trigger a flash back to the original sin. I need to purposefully break the circle of returning to negative thoughts.

Direct me, FATHER, to fixing my eyes on JESUS (Heb 12:2), recalling His love for me that is stronger than death (Song 8:6), praying He bestow such love on me so that I’m able to bestow it on myself and the ones I have sinned against or the ones that have sinned against me. This becomes the entrance into restoration.

LORD, hand out enough faith to me that I know Your forgiveness heals the damage of sin; You will restore (Isa 57:14-19); this is Your promise! Be with me as I prove Your healing by letting You tear away habits of old hurtful thoughts and permitting You to replace them with new habits of thinking.

I must willingly let You work even though I, quite possibly, will not have any recognizable changed feelings. (Proper feelings may never come, but freedom will and the joy of following truth will easily override any lack of feelings I long for.)

To help me anchor the renewed mind You give me, FATHER, I ask for faith to perform the below commands:

  1. Never bring up the subject of the sin and its situation to the one who has wronged me or to the one I have wronged.
  2. Never again bring it up in conversations with other people.
  3. Never dwell on it again in my own mind.

CONFESSION

WANTING TO CONQUER SIN

Screen Shot 2016-03-28 at 6.06.12 AM…PATIENT FATHER, instill in me again that it is my old nature still residing in the members of my body that wants to conquer sin. But when, under my own strength, I succeed in not sinning, I become prideful—I hug myself like Micah when he got a real Levite and made him his own personal priest (Jud 17:12-13) (ref#35, p311).

However, as I move closer to Your CHRIST, communing with Him, I comprehend my utter unprofitableness regarding my ability to not sin. In communion I am face to face with the Infinitely Righteous who knows very well my vanity.

Let me quickly assign honor and glory to JESUS CHRIST for all that He has done for me. This brings fame to You, FATHER. Let me speak this truth to myself: You are credited each time CHRIST pardons me.

FATHER, You are attentive to CHRIST’s work, not mine. I am justified and accepted into Your kingdom only by the activity of JESUS CHRIST. He bears my iniquities (Isa 53:11) laying down His life as a ransom for my sins (Mark 10:45).

My sins will ever be before me (Ps 51:3), so let me rack my brain to think of them, not so I can attempt to stop doing them but so I can realize the extent of them and celebrate in praise that JESUS CHRIST answered Your justice for me. He has undergone the punishment that was and is due me.

CHRIST takes my sins and bears them away—disposes of them so You, FATHER, can be pleased with me and I can cling to CHRIST as He provides love, life, righteousness, and peace for me. Yes, He provides. Continue to remind me, FATHER, that as soon as I look upon my sin believing I can remove it (by overcoming it), I lose sight of CHRIST.

CHRIST, You call me to You even with my presently known load of sins. You say, “Come with your guilt of sin—come unto me (Matt 11:28) and honor the FATHER by laying yourself before Me so I can remove your sins as far as the East is from the West” (Ps 103:12).

Let me call on CHRIST to remove my sin and not petition You, FATHER, to help me remove the sin myself.

CONFESSION

INTERNAL RIGHTEOUSNESS

Screen Shot 2016-03-26 at 2.44.13 PM“If you would climb to heaven, stoop. Do we not say of Jesus, ‘He descended so that He might ascend’? So must you. You must grow downward so that you may grow upward, for the sweetest fellowship with heaven is to be had by humble souls, and by them alone”Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, April 5th PM).

FATHER, I want to become conformed to the image of Your Son (Rom 8:29)—His compassionate acts—His authoritative words—His unrivaled righteousness.

This way of thinking brings me close to the thin line where, on one side, activities are produced by my own energies, and, on the other side, activities are prompted by the SPIRIT. It is an unsafe place to be for the continual lure is to fall on the side of self-effort, which, at its best, can only “act” like CHRIST.

FATHER, direct me toward an internal righteousness—my striving to subject my mind, will, affections, and desires to JESUS. This is the place where the HOLY SPIRIT definitely works. “In every corruption subdued, in every…besetting sin laid aside, in every holy desire begotten, Christ is glorified…” Octavius Winslow (ref#61, August 24th). In repentance—with a broken heart—by being contrite I can bring You more glory than appearing impressively righteous to people around me.

CONFESSION

INFORMATION NOT ENOUGH

Screen Shot 2016-03-26 at 1.55.46 PM…FATHER, when Moses went back to Egypt to lead the Israelites to the promised land, he knew exactly how the situation would play out for You told Him specifically ahead of time:

“And the Lord said to Moses, ‘When you go back to Egypt, see that you do before Pharaoh all the miracles that I have put in your power. But I will harden his heart, so that he will not let the people go” (Ex 4:21 ESV).

Yet when this happened Moses became downcast as if he had never heard You say Pharaoh would not let Your people go:

“Then Moses turned to the Lord and said, ‘…Why did you ever send me? For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in your name,…you have not delivered your people at all’” (Ex 5:22-23 ESV).

Moses didn’t even have to have faith. He could have relied on what You had told Him, but he was unable to even do that. I am that feeble, too. I am just like Moses. I “know”; Scripture tells me, yet I do not do it (James 4:17). I don’t apply Your words when the circumstance presents itself.

Moses proved that he couldn’t retain spiritual knowledge but had to call upon You in the “now” to get himself back on track with You. FATHER, impress upon me my frailty. Even when You clue me in beforehand Your past Word does not have the ability to guide me in the present. Teach me to tune my ear for Your continual voice behind me (Isa 30:21). I cannot live on any knowledge obtained in the past but must live moment by moment completely depending on Your SPIRIT for direction.

CONFESSION

PANIC

Screen Shot 2016-03-23 at 4.03.06 PM …if…you will not do all my commandments…then I will do this to you: I will visit you with panic…” (Lev 26:14-16 ESV).

FATHER, as naturally and surely as Your lightening starts forest fires and hurricanes produce devastation, disobedience brings panic. The cause will always yield the same results. Whether I am presumptions or naive about disobeying the result will be panic.

FATHER, it is frightfully easy to move myself from Your rule back to operating under my rule. Not paying attention is enough to do it. Problems start when I go days not realizing I’m hearing nothing from You to obey. When I’m not in Your Word, or in accountable fellowship, or in honest prayer, I am not exposed to Your commands and thus, not obedient to them. But, ignorance of the law is no excuse whether it’s civil law or Your law. Forgive me for walking away from You.

Whenever I deduce I can’t handle a present or upcoming circumstance, FATHER, remind me that it is because I have drifted away from Your care and power over my life. Call me back, blanket me in Your presence, cause me to delight again in obedience. Only You can dissipate panic.

CONFESSION

 

NO MORE GUILTY CONSCIENCE

Screen Shot 2016-03-18 at 3.41.06 PM…MY COMPASSIONATE SOVEREIGN, I easily discourage myself by believing I am sin because I am the one who is doing the sinning. But to the contrary, it is sin that uses the member’s of my body to work through (Rom 7:17).

CHRIST dwells in me (Gal 2:20) as well as my sinful nature (Rom 7:17,20) (ref#56, p1624, [Rom 7:14-25]). Help me LORD, to never forget that You have made me a saint yet because I’m a mortal creature I still am susceptible to sin. I am a saint who still has a sinful nature that indwells me. So, regarding sin, “…no longer is it I who do it, but the sinful nature which indwells me;…” Kenneth S. Wuest (ref#37, p363, [Rom 7:17]).

Remind me that possessing the nature of CHRIST I am no longer willingly habitually disobedient. It is I, in CHRIST, who makes me desire very much to be obedient even when I’m knowingly sinning (Rom 7:14-25).

And, even as I’m sinning the blood of JESUS cleanses all guilt from my conscience (Heb 10:22). So I should never feel guilty for sinning! You say, “…THEIR ERRORS AND THEIR BREACHES OF THE LAW WILL I SURELY NOT REMEMBER ANY MORE’” Arthur S. Way (ref#38, p242, [Heb 10:17]). There is absolute forgiveness of sins (Heb 10:18). I have been washed clean with pure water (Heb 10:22). Help me remind myself of that often, FATHER, for satan loves to bring my failures to remembrance.

When sin entangles me (Heb 12:1) and uses me for its evil purposes—when You, LORD, witness me aiding and abetting evil—when I’m caught in the crime of offending You—how exceedingly sorrowful I am for my participation in assaulting You. Sorrowful yes, but my faith in CHRIST eliminates guilt.

Again, it’s not I who sin but the sinful nature that still indwells me. Help me always make my confession thorough and quick so I may have the freedom again to praise You. I am always in CHRIST and clean (Heb 10:22). Do not let me wallow in self-pity because I find myself involved in sin. Keep me always from a guilty conscience. And encourage me with the fact that while sin still accompanies my new identity eventually my “new identity will result in the final triumph over indwelling sin (Rom 6:2-14)” The Reformation Study Bible (ref#56, p1624, [Rom 7:15]).