Most of us have a small circle of people who we consider our closest friends, people we can be completely honest with, people we trust. The apostle John was one of Jesus’ closest friends. He was part of Jesus’ inner circle, and their relationship was special. John wanted all Christians to experience a similar, close-knit relationship with Jesus.
John’s letter was written to reassure believers in the face of some popular and misleading false teachings. One idea that had crept into the church proposed that sin does not break one’s fellowship with God. To combat this false notion, John declared that if we claim to be without sin, we are being deceived. People who deny sin in their lives are either oblivious to their sin or simply lying to themselves.
Instead, John urged believers to confess their sins (v. 9). At times it is appropriate to confess sins amongst a group of trusted believers, and it is always appropriate to confess our sins to God. Some may ask, “I thought when I said the sinner’s prayer that all my sins (past, present, and future) are forgiven. Why do I need to constantly confess and ask for forgiveness?” John wants his readers to know that sin after our conversion, while covered once and for all by Christ’s sacrifice, hinders our relationship with the Lord. Any relationship full of secrets and lies is bound to be unhealthy. The type of confession he explains in verse nine removes the barriers toward an authentic relationship.
John also reassures his readers that Jesus is our “advocate” for the forgiveness of sin (2:1). He not only pleads our case to God the Father but also takes our deserved punishment. Why? So that we may have another chance at a closer fellowship with Him.
>> Is there a sin that is hindering your relationship with God? Confess it today and receive another opportunity to grow in your fellowship with Him.
Lord God, today we confess the sin that we have clung to, to the contradiction of our faith in You. Forgive us and help us repent and leave the sin behind. We crave Your all-sufficient holiness.