Saturday, July 26, 2008

Confession

Is Confession a fad or a fact?

By Abraham Israel





The Bible speaks about confession in various places and we will see one after another to fully understand the full potential of living a life of confession which will unleash the potential which we have in Christ within us to the outside world. Most of us who want the power of Christ to flow through us want to know the secret to live such lives. Even people who lived during the time of the great miracle ministry of Jesus, wanted to know the secret to live such lives. The people who saw Jesus perform signs on those who were diseased, and the multiplication of five loaves and two fishes to feed the multitudes asked Him, “…..“What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.” (John 6:28-29). Here most of these people were Jews, so naturally they thought that they should live according to some rules and regulation for a certain period of time, so that when God sees it, He will be pleased and will use them to do the mighty works of God like Jesus. This is the religious cluttered mind-set that thinks that they can please God by keeping the rules and regulation of the perfect law of God. But Jesus pointed to them that they cannot work to please God, but God will start to work in them and through them, once they start to believe in Him [i.e. pointing to Himself]whom He [i.e. Father God] sent. When people were eager to do the works of God, Jesus pointed to himself as the work of God to please God, through whom all the works of God are going to come to all humanity. In other words Jesus pointed that there is no more works of God but only one work of God [i.e. pointing to himself as the perfect work of the Father]through whom all the works will be done through as many as of those who will believe Him from that time onwards (Mark 9:38-39; 16:19-20).

Here a question may come to us, what does it mean to believe in Jesus?

To that the Bible says in Rom 10:6-13, “But the righteousness of faith speaks in this way, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’” (that is, to bring Christ down from above) or, “‘Who will descend into the abyss?’” (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” that is,the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus andbelieve in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. For “whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved.””.

Here we see two things that the scripture points out,

1) First to get saved one has to first confess with his mouth, Jesus as the Lord of his life. In that Instant he confesses Jesus as the Lord of his life, his dead spirit inside him will be born anew by the pouring out of the Spirit of the Lord in him by Jesus Christ from heaven (Titus 3:5-6; John 3:3,5-8; Ezek 36:25-27). This is the greatest miracle of all miracles because from that moment of time we are saved forever by the Lord Jesus from all wickedness and evil of this world. As a result of this event Jesus’ eternal heavenly God’s life is infused in to us (1 John 5:11-13). From that point you will be able to believe in your heart that Jesus Christ is alive and real because you will feel a God-connection inside you from that point of time onwards (1 John 4:14-15).

2) Then once a person becomes a believer the next verse in Rom 10:10 points out the secret to live a life of victory for the believer by saying “…with the heart one believes unto righteousness”. The believer has to keep on believing the promises of God from that point of time in order to be right with God because God will notice the thoughts and intents of the heart of every believer and will reward him according to it (Prov 12:5; 1 Samuel 16:7; Ps 44:21; 58:11; 94:11; Matt 9:3-4; 12:25). Then the believer will come to know of the deceitfulness of His own soulish heart and will start to seek for the precious thoughts of the Lord in heaven, this is where the relationship of a believer gets cemented with the love of God( Jer 17:9-10; 13:10; 16:12, 17; Prov 17:20; Eccl 9:3-10; Ps 139:17-18; 1 Cor 2:10-16; Rom 8:37-39; 2 Cor 5:13-15). This is the place where God will be pleased with the believer’s faith. This Rom 10:10 does not stop there but continues with the expression of the believer’s faith through one’s mouth saying, “…with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” What does it mean? You can have faith in God and God will also recognize and will reward it (Rom 14:22-23), but unless you speak out with your mouth what you believe in your heart, you will not experience salvation (Rev 12:10-12).

Here the word used in Greek for salvation is soteria [pronounced - sō-tā-rē'-ä] which meansdeliverance, preservation, safety, salvation a) deliverance from the molestation of enemiesb) in an ethical sense, that which concludes to the souls safety or salvation 1) of Messianic salvation 2) salvation as the present possession of all true Christians 3) future salvation, the sum of benefits and blessings which the Christians, redeemed from all earthly ills, will enjoy after the visible return of Christ from heaven in the consummated and eternal kingdom of God. This deliverance, preservation, safety, salvation by the power of God from enemies of God [i.e. Satan and his evil demonic cohorts] will manifest in the natural physical realm only when a person starts to confess with His mouth what He believes in his heart to be true of his life by what Jesus Christ has achieved for him personally through His birth, death and resurrection. The bottom line is, even though a believer believes in the promises of God in his heart, only when he starts to confess it with his mouth, he will be able to experience the power of God to be active in his life’s journey with God. This reminds us of the importance of the confession of the promises of God in a believer’s Christian life.

(i) The first type of confession is to one’s self and to others. The apostolic way of activating the power of God in a believer’s life is through this type of confession. That is why Paul said in His epistles to Corinthians, “And since we have the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, “I believed and therefore I spoke,”we also believe and therefore speak, knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus will also raise us up with Jesus, and will present us with you. For all things are for your sakes,that grace, having spread through the many, may cause thanksgiving to abound to the glory of God.” (2 Cor 4:13-15). Here we notice how Paul was activating the grace of God to abound in people’s life for the glory of God. He spoke the word of God and as they believed it and had the same spirit of faith, he expected them to speak the same word of faith, and as a result when they spoke the same word of faith as Paul himself, it caused the grace [empowerment, activation of the power of God, strength of God, divine character, favor] of God to be received in greater measure in the lives of the believer’s. In other words without speaking forth the promises of God with the spirit of faith, one cannot experience the empowerment of God in one’s life. If we ask to whom we are speaking it to?We are speaking it to ourselves and to others which will activate the grace of God in us and others by strengthening our soul and others by faith. For example in the New Testament Apostle Paul spoke to himself and to others by saying, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Phil 4:13) which activated the grace of God mightily in His life. King David was a sort of apostolic man in the Old Testament who did the same thing by “… strengthening himself in the Lord his God.” (1 Sam 30:6) while he was going through one of the toughest trial of his life. David was a man who always confessed the promises of God and as a result experienced the mighty grace and the power of God in his life (Ps 39:3; 40:3,9-10,16; 44:8; 45:1; 27:1). This is also confirmed by Apostle Paul in Philemon 6 where he said“that the sharing of your faith may become effective by the acknowledgment of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.” In other words he is saying, only when you confess and acknowledge the good things which is in you in Christ Jesus, only then your faith will become effective [i.e. to release the grace of God in to your life and other’s lives (Eph 2:8; Rom 5:2)]. So only we need to make it our habit and discipline ourselves to confess who we are in Christ Jesus.

You are what God says you are, so confess the following good things which are in you in Christ Jesus. Make your faith to be effective by accepting, admitting, recognizing and confessing the truth of the existence of His grace in you.

I AM - A Child of God (Romans 8:16)

I AM - Redeemed from the Hand of the Enemy (Psalm 107:2)

I AM - Forgiven (Colossians 1:13,14)

I AM - Saved by Grace through Faith (Ephesians 2:8)

I AM - Justified (Romans 5:1)

I AM - Sanctified (I Corinthians 6:11)

I AM - A New Creature (II Corinthians 5:17)

I AM - Partaker of His Divine Nature (II Peter 1:4)

I AM - Redeemed from the Curse of the Law (Galatians 3:13)

I AM - Delivered from the Powers of Darkness (Colossians 1:13)

I AM - Led by the Spirit of God (Romans 8:14)

I AM - Free From All Bondage (John 8:36)

I AM - Kept in Safety Wherever I Go (Psalm 91:11)

I AM - Getting All My Needs Met by Jesus (Philippians 4:19)

I AM - Casting All My Cares on Jesus (I Peter 5:7)

I AM - Strong in the Lord and in the Power of His Might (Ephesians 6:10)

I AM - Doing All Things through Christ Who Strengthens Me (Philippians 4:13)

I AM - An Heir of God and a Joint Heir with Jesus (Romans 8:17)

I AM - Heir to the Blessings of Abraham (Galatians 3:13, 14)

I AM - Observing and Doing the Lord's Commandments (Deuteronomy 28:I2)

I AM - Blessed Coming in and Blessed Going out (Deuteronomy 28:6)

I AM - An Heir of Eternal Life (I John 5:11, 12)

I AM - Blessed with All Spiritual Blessings (Ephesians 1:3)

I AM - Healed by His Stripes (I Peter 2:24)

I AM - Exercising My Authority over the Enemy (Luke 10:19)

I AM - Above Only and Not Beneath (Deuteronomy 28:13)

I AM - More than a Conqueror (Romans 8:37)

I AM - Establishing God's Word Here on Earth (Matthew 16:19)

I AM - An Overcomer by the Blood of the Lamb and the Word of My Testimony(Revelation 12:11)

I AM - Daily overcoming the Devil (I John 4:4)

I AM - Not Moved by What I See (II Corinthians 4:18)

I AM - Walking by Faith and Not by Sight (II Corinthians 5:7)

I AM - Casting Down Vain Imaginations (II Corinthians 10:4, 5)

I AM - Bringing Every Thought into Captivity (II Corinthians 10:5)

I AM - Being Transformed by Renewing My Mind (Romans 12:1, 2)

I AM - Reigning in Life Through Christ Jesus (Romans 5:17)

I AM - The Righteousness of God in Christ (II Corinthians 5:21)

I AM - An Imitator of Jesus (Ephesians 5:1)

I AM - The Light of the World (Matthew 5:14)

I AM - Blessing the Lord at All Times and Continually Praising the Lord with My Mouth (Psalm 34:1)

[the preceding I am excerpts taken from savedhealed.com]

(ii) The second type of confession is to the Lord where we agree with the law of the Lord and say to Him that we have sinned, when we do sin in our lives (1 John 1:9; 2:1-2; Ps 32:1-6; 38:18; 51:1-10). In the Old Testament, one of the ways the Israelites were supposed to cleanse themselves and maintain purity before God and in their community was by confessing their sins (Num 5:5-8). To 'confess' means 'speak the same; to agree with; to admit the truth.' When we confess to God, we do not tell Him anything that He does not already know. But our confession is a demonstration of a change of heart on our part (1 John 2:1-2; Ps 32:5; Prov 28:13). Refusing to confess our sins will allow sin to take a deeper root within our lives and community. Admitting our sins unlocks the gate of God's renewing grace and mercy, so that we can be able to receive God's peace, joy, righteousness and God's favor back over our lives. If we confess our sins, God is faithful to forgive (1 John 1:9). Jesus Himself will act on our behalf by supporting and advocating on our behalf to the Father God, so that God the Father can continue to show his favor on us from whom all good things proceed (James 1:17). Jesus Christ is the Apostle and the High Priest of our confession as the Bible says in Heb 3:1. Here the Bible is connecting the apostolic office of Jesus Christ with His office of High Priesthood because once we confess our sins to Him, immediately He as our apostle in heaven will release the grace of God [i.e. apostolic breakthrough anointing] to overcome that particular situation that is affecting us (Heb 10:23). Confessing to Jesus Christ our High Priest who is in heaven is equal to us approaching the mercy seat in the Holy of Holies in the Old Testament tabernacle, where the earthly High Priest entered in once a year with the blood of goats and bulls to make atonement for the nation of Israel and bring the favor of God back in to their lives (Heb 4:14-16; 9:7). Once we receive His grace, through it we can drive out all the devil’s demonic schemes, oppositions and completely immobilize his advancing strategies. This confession is very important for the grace of God and the undeserved favor of God to continue unhindered in our lives.As this sort of relationship with Jesus continues, we as the priest of God should offer sacrifices to Him by praising and thanking Jesus continually which will make Jesus to be delighted and be more active in our lives (Heb 9:7). Because He will take those incense prayer of praise and thanksgiving to God the Father who will in turn cause His favor to super abound in our lives and through us to others (Heb 13:15-16; 1 Peter 2:5,9; Rev 1:6, 5:8-10, 8:3-6). We prepare the incense as the priest of God through our thanksgiving, praises and prayers by working along with Jesus through the confession of our mouth. Tomorrow’s destiny of the world is in the hands of today’s body of intercessory priest and believer’s of God in the Church of Jesus Christ in this earth because God acts by our prayer.

(iii) The third type of confession is more like a ‘command to the spiritual realm of Satan and his demonic cohorts’. This we do based on the authority that we possess through Jesus Christ our Lord. Jesus himself challenged the believer’s in Mark 16:17 by saying,“….these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons…..”. Here the word ‘cast out’ in the original Greek means ‘to send out forcefully with the idea and belief of violence, to drive out (cast out), to expel a person from a society, to compel one to depart, to draw out with force, tear out, to reject with contempt, to cast off or away’. This does imply a violent attack that the believer does by the command of his mouth in Jesus Name. This includes driving a demon out of a demon possessed person and also the demonic oppression [i.e. in the area of both soulish and physical realm of every believer] that comes against a believer. And also Jesus has said in Luke 10:19, “Behold, I give you the authority [ exousia.gr ] to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power [ dunamis.gr ] of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” Here we see that Jesus Himself has personally entrusted His power [here the word used for power is not ‘dunamis’ which means ‘ability, strength, fire power…’ but ‘exousia’ which means ‘authority, complete governmental control, to rule over…’] over the evil world of demons and devils to the believers and has guaranteed that He will make sure that nothing by any means will hurt you when you exercise the authority He has given you personally to exercise it. The whole of heaven and God’s angels will defend the authority of Jesus when you exercise it believing His word (Phil 2:9-11; Eph 1:18-23). So do not believe what people say about commanding to the devil, but know absolutely because you are a child of God, all the evil spirits [i.e. Satan and all his demons] are under your authority already. Some people say that the Bible does not say that authority has been given for the believer to speak against Satan and his demons in to thin air. To that the Bible says that Satan is the prince of the power of the air (Eph 2:2). The Bible also warns the believer to “….. submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.” (James 4:7) and to “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.” (1 Peter 5:8-9). Here the word resist in Greek is ‘anthistēmi’ [pronounced än-thē'-stā-mē (Key)’] which means ‘to set one's self against, to withstand, resist, oppose, to set against’ in both the above verses. My question to you is? If Satan is the prince of the power of air [with all his demons under him acting under his command through the air] and if he and his demonic cohorts are walking to and fro in the air, How do you resist him and see him flee if the confession of command is not given out in to the thick or thin air? For example in the natural, if an air missile is going to strike you through the thin air, will you as a commander in-charge fire your missile in to sea or in to the air? The Bible says, “We walk by [spiritual] faith, not by [physical] sight” (2 Cor 5:7). According to this above verse we resist Satan and speak against him and his demons even if we don’t see them with our natural eyes. In other words whether we see those demons and devils present in the air or not, we believe the Bible and speak against them in to the air when we feel oppressed by their activity of stealing, killing, and destroying our blessed abundant life which Christ has given to us (John 10:10).

Satan and his demonic subordinates do not know your thoughts because as the Bible says only your spirit man and God only knows all your thoughts (1 Cor 2:11; Ps 94:11). So you cannot resist the devil by thinking against them but by only speaking against them with the authority that Jesus has already given to you. Satan and his demons will all come to know that you are resisting them, only when you start to speak against them with your mouth. So only the Bible clearly says in Rev 12:10-11, “Then [when? The moment Christ said “It is finished” (John 19:30;12:31-33)] I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come[to the hearts of all believer’s in Christ (2 Cor 6:2; Luke 17:21; Eph 3:16-17, 20)], for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down [from representing or guarding every man on earth before God (Job 1:6-7,12; 2:1-3; Zech 3:1-5; Matt 18:10)]. And they [i.e. believers in Christ] overcame him [i.e. Satan] by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.” From the preceding verse we see that only by confessing to God about the sin that you have done, you are submitting to God your petition for the need for being covered with Christ’s Blood and automatically the blood of Jesus will cleanse you and restore your connection with God immediately (James 4:7; 1 John 1:9,7), the moment you do that you are equipped enough to speak against Satan and his demons by the word of your testimony and cast them out. This type of submitting to God and resisting the devil can be equated to dying to self life [i.e. described in the preceding verse as “they did not love their life to death”]because you are acknowledging to God your inability to protect yourself, and the need for the blood of Christ to cover you for protection from all evil and condemnation.

The Old Testament scriptures too agree with this view point of speaking against the devil and his demonic weapons of destruction. The Bible says in Isaiah 54:17,"No weapon formed against you shall prosper, And every tongue which rises against you in judgment, You shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, And their righteousness is from Me...”. A question may arise and you may ask how do you know that it is spoken against Satan and his demonic cohorts. To that you must turn to preceding verse in Isaiah 54:16 and should see in context, that God is referring to Satan in a veiled way saying “….I have created the spoiler [destroyer] to destroy [Cross ref: Exo 12:12,13,23; Heb 11:28 Note: God was not killing the first born but allowed the destroyer who was using the plague or death virus to kill all the first born of the Egyptians. God covered the Israelites but allowed the destroyer to kill the Egyptians firstborn to make a difference between His blood bought people and the Egyptians who had no faith in the blood].” This verse in Isaiah 54:17 implies that you shouldMake sure you use your heritage as the servant of the Lord, standing in the righteousness of the Lord and condemning [i.e. speak against verbally] every demonic tongue [i.e. demons rarely speak audibly, but mostly will enforce deceptive, wicked and perverse thoughts in to your mind constantly] that is rising against you in judgment. This can only negate the enemy’s strategy that you will be facing in your life.

Again in Jeremiah 10:11, God is encouraging the believer to say and declare against the so called demonic gods, that they will perish from the earth in the coming days and instead the glory of the real creator God will arise forth because He owns it and sustains it as described in the succeeding verses 12 and 13 and preceding verse 10.

All these clear exposition of the scripture points to one thing, the believer should confess and speak against all satanic forces to get delivered from all their evil demonic attacks. Jesus will not rebuke from heaven because He has already given His authority in to the believer’s hands and have entrusted them to fight against His enemies and our enemies [i.e. Satan and his demons]. If the believer does not boldly do such things, he will be oppressed all his life. That why Jesus said, “Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.” (John 8:36). In other words Jesus was saying, ‘Because you believe in Me, I have already set you free forever and have given you authority over all satanic devils and demons, it is up to you to use the authority I have given you personally.’ Are you ready? You are asking me for what? To use the authority that Jesus has given you. Jesus is waiting and watching with expectation to see you use it, which will bring Him the glory that He only deserves!! Praise the Lord!



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