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Does God forgive our sins before we confess them?¶
I believe –and have been told by the Church– that God forgives our sins unconditionally, even before we confess them. God loves you as you are, even if you are not aware of your sins. This is the Gospel. That’s why Christians dare to speak about sins. They speak about sins because they dare it.
Clarification: Of course your sins harm you and/or others. But that’s not a punishment, it is a natural part of the game of life. God does not punish. The father of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11–32) had been waiting for the return of his son already before the son had confessed his mischiefs. Of course you need to confess your sins because when you sweep them under the carpet, you don’t get rid of them, they will accumulate and grow. And of course there is one kind of sin, very different in nature, the “sin against the Holy Spirit” (), which separates you from God. If the prodigal son hadn’t decided to return to his father, he would have died miserably without receiving God’s forgiveness.
See also Die Grenze seiner Gnade
Jeremy Myers (redeeminggod.com) for example agrees with me. But Suzie Hartwright (covenantkeepers.com) clearly doesn’t. She writes “Does God forgive our sins before we believe in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior? Does God forgive our sins before we confess and repent of them? The answer to all three questions is no, we have no evidence or examples in either the Old Testament or the New Testament that would support that.”
To confess your sin means to agree with God that it is a sin. It is more than just to admit, proclaim, or declare it. The opposite of confession is denial.