If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
1 John 1:9
Psalm 51:1-4 The Protestant Reformation was sparked over the abuse of the doctrine of cleansing from sin. In 1517, Pope Leo X authorized the sale of indulgences, or pardons, in order to raise money for the rebuilding of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. A saying was attributed to a chief marketer of the indulgences, a friar named Johann Tetzel: “As soon as a coin in the coffer rings, a soul from purgatory springs.” This abuse of the biblical doctrine of forgiveness prompted Martin Luther to write his 95 Theses, setting in motion events that led to the Reformation.
Clarity about forgiveness is found in simple statements in Psalm 32:5 and 1 John 1:9. Those verses say that when we acknowledge our sins by confessing them to God, He forgives. First John 1:9 was written to Christians who had already been forgiven of their sins through faith in Christ. So John was referring to sins that occur after a Christian is saved. And his Greek words suggest that confession is to be an ongoing act—as often as is needed. Forgiveness means being clean.
Instead of wondering if your sins are forgiven, be sure. If you have confessed them, they are.
The way to cover our sin is to uncover it by confession.
Psalms 22 – 27