Psalm 51, 1 John 1:8-2:6, Mark 13:31-14:2
Honesty is the best policy. Or is it? Some people will take advantage of our honesty. Some people will look down on the honest. Think about politicians. Most people don’t trust them. Many of their campaign promises are false, or impossible whether due to finances, political will, and politics in general. Yet, they remain in power despite a general perception that they are not trustworthy. Many are treated like royalty or some sort of salvation figure. It just doesn’t make sense.
David was not the best-behaved person. He did a lot of things wrong. Yet, as Psalm 51 shows, he was honest with himself (eventually) and with God. Once confronted by his sin, he confessed. David knew that God (through the prophet Nathan) was righteous in condemnation. David threw himself (proverbially) at the merciful feet of God. David knew that God would be right condemning him, yet still faithful that God would act redemptively.
Our own honesty may begin with the confession that we are still far from perfectly following Christ. In fact, the more like Jesus we become the more aware of how far we are from him. That is the point, though. Our pride can and does often keep us from being honest, especially with ourselves. Many churches make some sort of proclamation on Sunday that is in line with this passage in 1 John. Since it is done every week, it can become rote and is not an honest confession. When it becomes rote, like the temple sacrifices often were, then the true confession of sin doesn’t occur, and the relationship between God and self is not restored. Taking this passage of 1 John in conjunction with David’s words, “…Against you—you alone—I have sinned…” Even though David harmed others, just as we have, ultimately the sin is against God. Sin really is the damaged relationship between man and God. God paved the way. We have to walk the road.
In addition, we have this reality that Jesus presents in Mark. We don’t know when our time will come. It is not about God waiting to drop the other shoe. God doesn’t work that way. It is about a life of confession, truth, and relationship. When this life is lived out and the time comes, all will be well.
1) What do you need to confess to God? When you confess, are you truly repentant, or are you just going through the motions?
2) There are two common perspectives of confession. One is forgiveness from the lawgiver (escape). Another is a restoration of relationship. When you think of confession are you being honest about your perspective of it?
3) Sometimes being honest is hard. What is the hardest honest conversation you have ever had? What made it so hard?
FD) What is the different between a liar, and a person who told a lie? Are they different?