If it’s cheap enough, someone will buy it.
It really doesn’t even matter if it’s something you want or need. If the deal is good enough, how could you say no? Better yet, why would you say no? After all, sometimes, it’s all about the deal.
And there’s no better deal than the one offered in the Bible. You become a Christian by saying a little prayer and BAM, your final destination becomes heaven and not hell. On top of that, you can suddenly do anything you want… and it’s all covered by a little thing called grace.
There’s even a specific verse that says so: 1 John 1:9 which says “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
But just in case, we want to make sure we know what “confess” means, since that’s the thing we have to do to receive this great promise. How wonderful we feel when we find out that it simply means “agree.”
We can do that, we say to ourselves!
“Yup. I’ve committed sins,” we say, “in fact, God, I’ll do you one better. I’ll confess the sins I am going to commit tonight and the ones I know I am planning to commit tomorrow.” That way, we can be all caught up on our confessing.
Sadly, isn’t that the way we want to apply 1 John 1:9? Isn’t that the way we choose to live our lives?
Cheap grace, it’s called. But is that really what the Bible teaches us? Do we really think that the God who created us, who knows the end from the beginning, is being fooled by our insincere “confession?”
Do we think that we can take a great and wonderful promise, like 1 John 1:9, and separate it from its context? What about 1 John 1:6, just 3 sentences back in the same paragraph? What do we do with that, exactly, when it says so plainly that, “If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.”
Do we simply disregard it because it doesn’t fit with what we would like to believe? Unfortunately, many people who call themselves “Christians” do just that.
Consider the truth of this statement: Confession apart from obedience is worthless. Thats what the Bible teaches us, time and time again.
- Matthew 7:21 – “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.
- Luke 8:21 – But he answered them, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.”
- Luke 11:28 – But he said, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it!”
Grace is not cheap. It cost Jesus His very life, as His blood was shed for many. It breaks my heart when I think of how many times I “confessed” my sin to Him knowing that I really wasn’t going to change and obey His commandments. It breaks my heart to know how many times I mocked the beautiful grace of my God, my Lord and Savior.
Only when I am humbled and broken by my sin will my confession be real. Only when that brokenness leads me to obey the Scriptures have I truly understood forgiveness and repentance.
2 Corinthians 7:10 – For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.
True confession always produces repentance and repentance will lead to salvation. I pray for a tender heart that will always produce repentance and will not cheapen grace.