Subtle Devastating Effects of Unconfessed Sins
Philip Nache, Pastor, Hope of Nations Gospel, St. Paul MN
"Therefore, confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed." James 5:16 (NIV)
Confession is commanded because an effective prayer acknowledges and confesses sins for restored fellowship with God (1 John 1:8,9).
Confession requires humility. Anytime we come before God in self-righteousness is prideful, and it is a barrier to prayer and ministry. Unfortunately, some of us who serve as ministers fall victim to pride. When a minister prays, does ministry and receives satisfaction while there is unconfessed sin, then spiritual work becomes secular/task oriented.
In the context, verse 15 "prayer offered in faith" in connection with verse 16 "Therefore, confess your sins... so that you may be healed" clearly states that the foundation upon which faith works in prayer is a true confession.
Furthermore, for verse 17 to say "Elijah was a man with nature like ours," indicates how vital confession is in prayers as it humbly presents us justified through the imputed righteousness of Christ, not our own righteousness, before God. Understanding that none of us measures up makes confession the necessary starting point of prayer, and honest confession God's mercy to use us (Prov. 28:13).
PRAYER: Dear Lord, we are broken by Your Word in areas of pride, self-righteousness and unconfessed sin. Please grant us the grace to always humble ourselves and sincerely confess our sins.