Unconfessed Sin Is Destructive Choice for Today’s Christian

“Then Nathan said to David, ‘You are the man!’” (2 Samuel 12:7)

When the prophet Nathan pointed his finger at David and told him his sins were known by God, it shook David to his core. No longer could he think he could hide the fact that he had committed adultery with Bathsheba and murdered her husband, Uriah. He had foolishly convinced himself that out of sight meant out of mind until Nathan reminded him that God knew his sins, not to mention others who worked and lived close by.

David later realized the consequences of unconfessed sin and wrote about that experience in Psalm 32. First, he emphasized that unconfessed sin can make you hurt when you’re under conviction about it. “When I kept silent,” he later admitted, “my bones grew old through my groaning all the day long.” (Psalm 32:3) Interesting, isn’t it? We know that sin ultimately kills, but what we don’t always understand is it can make you hurt along the way. In other words, that joint ache may have more to do with how you’re living as opposed to how long you’ve lived!

But David not only realized how unconfessed sin can literally make your body ache, he also knew it could zap you of your strength, too. Still under conviction, he wrote, “For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my vitality was turned into the drought of summer.” (Psalm 32:4)

David finally succumbed to the power of conviction, confessed his sins, and received forgiveness. He later exclaimed, “Blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute iniquity and in whose spirit there is no deceit.” (Psalm 32:2) Indeed, there is liberty when we are freed from burden of sin.

As Christians, we need to be careful when it comes to sin. You can’t read this account and think that David’s sins needed to be confessed because they were more grievous than ours. All sin distances us from God. He makes no distinction in the Bible. Consequently, what we may see as small sins grieve God just as much as David’s sins. There is no difference.

David also warned us about waiting too long to confess our sins. As Nathan pointed out, God already knows about the sin in our lives. He just wants us to own up to it and seek his forgiveness. “For this cause everyone who is godly shall pray to you in a time when you may be found.” (Psalm 32:6) While there are no limits to God’s forgiveness, the longer we wait to confess our sins, the farther it distances us from him. In short, our relationship can grow cold.

Sin is like a chronic disease. If it goes unattended, it will manifest itself in our lives in dangerous ways. I told my Sunday School class that as a diabetic, I cannot ignore the effects of high levels of glucose in my bloodstream. “You may not see what it’s doing to me, but I see it,” I told them. “My lower legs itch and I stay tired. If I don’t do something about it, it will eventually kill me.”

Unconfessed sin among Christians distances us from God. It kills any chance of having the close, abiding relationship that he wants to have with us. That’s why we should remember what the Psalmist wrote: “But there is forgiveness with you…For with the Lord there is mercy, and with him is abundant redemption.” (Psalm 130:4,7)

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