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Only God in Christ has the power to forgive sin. But you and I must confess it to Him personally, specifically, and honestly if we want to receive forgiveness. God promises, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9, NIV). That word confess means to call sin by the same names that God does, to agree with God about your sin.
You and I often play games with the names we call sin to make it seem less like sin. For example, we call the sin of unbelief, worry. We call the sin of lying, exaggeration. We call the sin of fornication, safe sex.
As long as we switch the labels on sin to make it seem less serious, we’re being dishonest with ourselves and with God, and we remain unforgiven. But, if we say the same thing about our sin that God says-if we say, “God, it’s lying. It’s jealousy. It’s lust. It’s revenge. It’s hate. It’s adultery. It’s unforgiveness”-God will forgive us! So start naming your sin for what it is in God’s eyes.