A Lesson From a Small Boy in Sunday School:
“If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:8-9).
I came across an interesting and funny story on the internet one day: A Sunday School teacher had just concluded her lesson and wanted to make sure she had made her point. She said, “Can anyone tell me what you must do before you can obtain forgiveness of sin?” There was a short pause and then, from the back of the room, a small boy spoke up. “Sin,” he said.
I’m sure that wasn’t the homiletical, hermeneutical, philosophical or theological answer that the teacher was looking for, but there is an important truth to learn in it nonetheless. Our Scripture for today in First John says that if we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. In fact, Romans 3:10-12 says, “No one is good – not even one. No one has real understanding, no one is seeking God. All have turned away from God, all have gone wrong. No one does good, not even one.” The Bible makes it clear that we are all sinners, whether we like to admit it or not. But there is some good news in this, and we will get to it in a moment. During my personal devotional times in the mornings this week, I’ve been reading through the book of Psalms. Here’s what I read yesterday:
“Oh, what joy for those whose rebellion is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight…When I refused to confess my sin, I was weak and miserable, and I groaned all day long. Day and night your hand of discipline was heavy on me. My strength evaporated like water in the summer heat. Finally, I confessed all my sins to you and stopping trying to hide them. I said to myself, I will confess my rebellion to the Lord. And you forgave me. All my guilt is gone.” (Psalm 32:1-5).
We see here that the answer the small boy gave to his teacher was actually quite insightful. She asked, “Can anyone tell me what you must do before you can obtain forgiveness of sin?” SIN. And that is what makes Jesus so precious to us as Christians. If we weren’t sinners, and we were basically good people, then we wouldn’t have a need for a Saviour. But because we ARE sinners, and we DO sin, then we need someone who can forgive those sins. If we don’t admit that we’re sinners, and confess those sins to God, we can never be forgiven. Like King David, if we don’t confess our sin, we will become weak and miserable, and God’s hand of discipline will be heavy upon us. But if we will confess our sins to God, He is faithful and just to forgive our sins, and to wash us totally clean from all unrighteousness. As the Psalmist David wrote, there is an awesome joy that awaits those whose rebellion is forgiven, and whose sin is put out of sight.
If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and God’s truth is not in us. However, if we will confess our sins to Him, He is faithful, and He will forgive us of our sins, and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Come to Jesus today and confess your sins to Him, and be forgiven.
Pastor Chris Jordan