Do Christian need to confess their sin daily?
If God has unconditionally forgiven us of our sins, why then do we need to confess our sins daily?
God commands confession. In 1 John 1:8,9, John writes, “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
Confession of sin is a fruit of faith, not a condition of our forgiveness. This is equally important for us to understand. When Jesus taught us to pray in the Lord’s prayer, “And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive…” we have instruction from Jesus to pray for forgiveness, but pray with the confidence that we are forgiven.
Similar to this issue, is when we come to the Lord’s Supper. Jesus said, “Given and shed for you for the remission of sins.” Well, if we are forgiven for our sins before we come to the Lord’s table, why then do we need to come to the Lord’s table to receive forgiveness of our sins? The answer to that question is similar to your initial question about confession: number 1, Christ commands it, number 2, we are always in need of forgiveness, and number 3, it is a fruit of our faith to desire God’s continual forgiveness in our life.
The question is this: When we ask Jesus for forgiveness in the Lord’s prayer and when we come to communion to receive forgiveness from Jesus and when we confess our sins to Jesus through repentance, does God actually forgive us our sins if we are already unconditionally forgiven by him? And the answer is a resounding yes! In a very personal way, he reminds, assures, and comforts his children through confession, the Lord’s Supper and the Lord’s prayer that we have what we ask for from our loving, heavenly Father. And the truth is that we have it before we even ask for it!
These fruits of our faith, point out the fact that we are the children of God who understand our deep need for his continual forgiveness in our life. The world (unbelievers) has no such need, which is why they don’t dine at the Lord’s table to receive his body and blood for the forgiveness of their sins; they don’t pray in the Lord’s prayer the petition that asks God to forgive us our sins, and they don’t regularly confess their sins, because they have no fruits of faith and therefore no desire to be forgiven by God. But the child of God, who knows that they sin daily and sin much, feels a great burden in his soul to seek God and his forgiveness in Christ and God delivers those channels for us to receive his genuine forgiveness. Absolution from the pastor or from another Christian is a wonderful way in which God uses the mouth of man to reminds us of the joys of the gospel. Remember Jesus told his disciples, “If you forgive the sins of any…they are forgiven”?
As Jeremiah wrote in the Lamentations 3:22,23 22 Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Confession, the Lord’s Supper, and the Lord’s prayer are just a few ways in which God allows us his children to experience what Jeremiah wrote about in the third chapter of the Lamentations!