If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. (I John 1:8-10)
We are looking at the Biblical teaching of the light of God. We see in scripture, “God is light and in him is no darkness at all” . The only precondition for sinful man to come into fellowship with the Holy God, is the willingness to come into the light.
To come to God is to come into the light. Primarily, at the onset it is the light of exposure. We see ourselves when we truly encounter God. The Bible is a mirror, so also is a true Church, also true Christians. The Bible, the church and the Christian all convey the light of God. This is why many people avoid all three, they dread the light of exposure, the “secrets of their own heart are revealed “to them in the light“, and it is unnerving to them.
The primary way to remain in the light, is to confess our sins to God. We must not obfuscate, or play games about our own shortcomings. The Greek word for “confess” in the Bible is “Homologia”, literally to ‘say the same thing as‘ God does, to come into moral agreement with our LORD and Creator.
Some of the ways people obfuscate is by denying the reality of our sin. Some hold to doctrines which deny that born again Christians can have sin or can be condemned in any way. There have always been heresies which deny the reality and gravity of sin, in effect denying that sin harms fellowship with God. This is a form of darkness.
Others rename sins, giving them therapeutic names and descriptions. There are very few ‘drunkards’ anymore, only ‘alcoholics’. Adulterers and fornicators are now considered to be ‘sex addicts’ and have ‘affairs’. By this way sin is redefined, the responsibility for it is lessened and eased, and the sinner is considered a victim rather than a transgressor.
This too is a form of darkness, and of of alienation from God and sinking into self, rather than having access with God. To come into the light is to confess our sins, to say the same thing about them as God has said, and to call them for what they really are.
As long as sin remains unconfessed, fellowship with God is cut off and heaviness and dryness sets in, as David teaches us in Psalm 32,
Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man unto whom the Lord imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile. When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long. For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer. Selah. I acknowledge my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah. (Psalm 32:1-5)
Note that when he kept silence, he experienced something very much like depression. The fellowship with God was suspended, Sin had damaged it, and David dried up.
But it is in the simplicity of David confessing his sin, and uncovering the iniquity, bringing it out into the light of God and his exposure, God forgave the King and fellowship was restored. We cannot live without communion with God, therefore we cannot live without forgiveness of sin. It is as simple as that.
Staying in the Light depends on the practice of regular confession of sin. John tells us that God’s forgiveness is a matter of His own faithfulness and Justice, and not of our feelings about it. God has told us that because of the blood of Jesus, He would cleanse us of each and every offense as long as we confess our sins. Sin, forgiveness, light, darkness