July 27 I Saturday
“Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.”
What happens when we have an encounter with God? When Isaiah saw the Lord, he cried out, “Woe to me!… I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty” (Isaiah 6:5). Isaiah saw his own uncleanliness at the sight of God. Similarly, when Job experienced God, he exclaimed, “My ears had heard of You but now my eyes have seen You. Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust and ashes” (Job 42:5-6). Job not only heard but also saw God, which resulted in his need to repent. Both Isaiah and Job saw their own sinful nature when they faced God.
The word “sin” derives from archery, which literally means, “to miss the mark.” If we took an arrow, shot it at a target and missed the target—this is called “sin.” We only know we have missed the mark when we know what the target is. If a person took a bow and arrow and shot it randomly, we would have no idea whether it was a good or a bad shot unless a target is set up. When we set up a target, shoot the arrow and miss the target, there is no guessing about it; the arrow either hit or missed the mark. Paul tells us of the target that we come short of: “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). The glory of God is the moral character of God.
We encounter God by reading His word, like the Israelites did in the Old Testament Book of Nehemiah: “They stood where they were and read from the Book of the Law of the LORD their God for a quarter of the day, and spent another quarter in confession...” (Nehemiah 9:3). Like Isaiah and Job, when the Israelites encountered God’s moral character in all its beauty and perfection through His Word, they were driven to confess of their sinful nature.
When a person meets God, they have a different view of themselves. We do not know what our problem is until we know what it is that we should be and were created to be—a reflection of God. Hence, in the New Testament, John says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). Although our encounter with God will bring us to our knees in confession when we see how we have missed the mark, we have confidence in doing so because our God is faithful and will forgive us of all our sins.
Prayer: Lord God, You are marvellous and perfect in all Your ways. Thank You for forgiving me of my sins. Guide me to walk in Your righteousness.