“For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more.”
- Hebrews 8:12
As we enter this new year resolutions are abounding! We make resolutions that we endeavor to keep in the months to come. The problem, of course, is that we do not always keep these as we should…An honest admission of sins is in order as we approach our God. So it is that we come clean in order to be cleansed! As we gather together, we firstly fall to our knees to confess our failings before him. We are after all, sinners in the presence of the only Savior.
So we confess together. Take for example, the familiar confession of sins from Setting three of the Divine Service. “I, a poor, miserable sinner, confess unto You all my sins and iniquities
with which I have ever offended You and justly deserved Your temporal and eternal punishment. But I am heartily sorry for them and sincerely repent of them, and I pray You of Your boundless mercy and for the sake of the holy, innocent, bitter sufferings and death of Your beloved Son, Jesus Christ, to be gracious and merciful to me, a poor, sinful being.” We are “miserable sinners” meaning ones in need of mercy. We confess ALL our sins with which we have EVER offended him and that we are heartily sorry and sincerely repent before him…No wonder there is silence provided for reflection before our God in this time!
What a way to begin before our God each week, each day, beginning with a simple honest admission of guilt before him. We come clean in order to be cleansed! So also personal confession is offered for our people in need of this refresher for faith, that personal word delivered from the Lord in this way. For so often we fail. Yet things are not the same with our God! His resolution toward us as his people called by his name, is fresh and new each day of each year! For the promise of God for all who repent is an announcement of his grace toward us. It is as follows, “In the stead and by the command of my Lord Jesus Christ, I forgive you all
your sins in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”
Resolutions are ever abounding in our lives. Perhaps as we begin this year you might resolve to begin again with bible class at the church, or with a regular effort at time in prayer and God’s words in your day to day, maybe becoming more faithful in worship week to week. As you do remember with joy your Lord who ever resolves to save and keep his own, committing to renew and sustain us all in faith each day. What a way to begin again before God! And what a way to begin this year together! For our God has promised, “I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more.”