Friday, December 24, 2010

Christian Mythology: 26. Confession – Myth: It’s good for the soul

Well I spilled some of my soul yesterday. That may bother some folks. I was not specific about what sins and what things destroyed my mind. But not much imagination is required to figure it out. Sometimes brutal honesty is the best way to get across a point. I know that some of my readers can identify with my past. They need to know that God is good. He is merciful. His lovingkindness has no bounds. But He does have limits. Thankfully, whether we get to heaven at a ripe old age, or we get there too soon because God reached His limit, we still cannot be taken from His hand. He will not forsake us. We cannot lose our salvation.

Jesus spent a lot of time with guys like me. He understood and experienced rejection by the very people we would expect to love and accept us. He visited the homes of sinners. He ate with outcasts. He touched people who had highly contagious diseases. He healed people that the rest of us would have given up on long ago. He called men to Himself that the religious world called ignorant and unlearned. When He was born, the second-most unclean men of all visited Him in the manger. Imagine filthy shepherds trying to get into a modern maternity ward.

Folks like us don't get much better as life goes on. Paul described himself and the other apostles as the "offscouring" and "filth" of the world. Chuck Swindoll elaborated on these terms using the familiar picture of the kitchen sink after the dishes were washed. We are all the crud and scraps caught in the trap.

When we confess our sins, Jesus is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. When we repent, purged with hyssop, and made whiter than snow, our lowly estate does not change. We need to stay humble and keep Swindoll's picture in mind and heart. This we do despite the fact that in Jesus we are clean and sin-free. That is nothing to boast about in ourselves. Our boasting, yea, our confession, is in the cross. Amen.

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