WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
JUNE 23, 2023
TOPIC: OWN YOUR SINS
BY T. O. BANSO
“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” (1 John 1:8-10 New King James Version).
To own your sins means to admit your sins. It means not passing the buck or making excuses for your sins. This is not what many people do. They explain away their sins. They justify them or blame another person or others for them. They could even blame circumstances, the government, the economy, and so on. But this is a waste of time. Nothing a person does other than own his sins will be acceptable to God.
Buck-passing or blame-shifting is as old as humankind. Adam and Eve started it in the Garden of Eden. Adam while shifting the blame to Eve indirectly blamed God. But it didn’t stop God from passing judgment on them and the serpent. See what Adam and Eve told God: “The man said, ‘The woman you put here with me — she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.’ Then the Lord God said to the woman, ‘What is this you have done?’ The woman said, ‘The serpent deceived me, and I ate’” (Genesis 3:12-13 New International Version).
Stop passing the buck or shifting the blame. Own your sins. Call your sin a sin. Don’t hold somebody else or a situation responsible for your sin or say everybody is doing it. Daniel and his three Hebrew friends refused to join the rest to eat the king’s food and drink his wine in Babylon. They chose to be different. “But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank; therefore he requested of the chief of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself” (Daniel 1:8 New King James Version). It’s a lie that everybody is doing it.
Also in Babylon, the three Hebrews, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, unlike the rest, refused to serve Nebuchadnezzar’s gods or worship the gold image which he had set up. Although they were thrown into the fiery furnace, God delivered them (Daniel 3:8-30).
Own your sins and don’t make untenable excuses. It is the sinner who admits his guilt that will come to God to receive forgiveness. Romans 3:23-24 says all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.
There is no justifiable excuse for your sin. Joseph didn’t use Mrs Potiphar as an excuse to commit sexual immorality. He refused to sleep with her. He didn’t succumb to her daily seduction and then defend it by saying it was her fault, not his. But one day, when she caught him by his garment, he fled. Although she lied that he wanted to rape her and he was unjustly put in prison, God brought him out and promoted him to become Prime Minister in the same country he had been imprisoned (Genesis 39:7-20; 41:14-46). Note what Joseph said to his seducer in Genesis 39:9: “There is no one greater in this house than I, nor has he kept back anything from me but you, because you are his wife. How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” (New King James Version).
Don’t make excuses for your sins. Own them. Nobody’s defence for violating the Word of God will exonerate him. It’s a waste of time. Jesus says, “If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin” (John 15:22 New King James Version).
Own your sins. The Bible says anyone who knows the good he ought to do and doesn’t do it, sins (James 4:17). Don’t call your sin a name that downplays or trivializes it. Sin is sin. God sees what you do – your sin. And you have no excuse for doing it. “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account” (Hebrews 4:13 New International Version). Pampering yourself, saying that your sin is not your fault, amounts to encouraging yourself to continue in it.
What God demands from sinners is genuine repentance and confession. He is willing to forgive. “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” (1 John 1:8-10 New King James Version).
Acts 17:30-31 says, “In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to all men by raising him from the dead” (New International Version).
Own your sins. Don’t let the devil deceive you that your case is special. It’s a lie. God will not give you special permission to disobey His Word because your case is special! “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it” (1 Corinthians 10:13 New International Version).
Note in that scripture the phrase “common to all.” In other words, the temptation you face is not different from what others are facing. It is the same temptation. Thus, you don’t have any excuse. The Easy-to-Read Version puts 1 Corinthians 10:13 thus: “The only temptations that you have are the same temptations that all people have. But you can trust God. He will not let you be tempted more than you can bear. But when you are tempted, God will also give you a way to escape that temptation. Then you will be able to endure it.”
Don’t blame any human being or God for your sins. Some people even blame the devil instead of blaming themselves and asking for the help of the Holy Spirit to obey the Word and live victoriously over sin. “When tempted, no one should say, ‘God is tempting me.’ For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death” (James 1:13-15 New International Version).
The problem with many people is not that they don’t know what constitutes sin. It is not about their ignorance of God’s will but their inability to do what God wants. The beginning of victory over sin is owning it, and not blaming anyone else. Paul said, “O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?” (Romans 7:24 New King James version). Did you see that he didn’t pamper or indulge himself? In 1 Timothy 1:15, he said, “This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief” (New King James Version). Note again how he described himself: chief of sinners. He humbled himself and received salvation through Christ Jesus.
Don’t know God’s will, go against it, and be justifying your action. Luke 12:47-48 says, “That servant who knows his master’s will and does not get ready or does not do what his master wants will be beaten with many blows. But the one who does not know and does things deserving punishment will be beaten with few blows. From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked” (New International Version).
Own your sins. 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 says, “Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (New International Version). Galatians 5:19-21 gives us the list of the works of the flesh and says that those who practise them will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Own your sins and repent today. There is no sin too great that God cannot forgive. If your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow and if they are red like crimson, they shall be as wool (Isaiah 1:18). Those who own their sins know that because they are in Christ Jesus, they will not be judged as sinners, as He has died for their sins – past, present, and future. Moreover, they can apologize without self-justification to those they wronged because God has forgiven them their sins.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, I acknowledge my sins and will not explain them away, defend them, trivialize them, or shift the blame. I confess my sins and ask for forgiveness. Holy Spirit, help me to live victoriously over sin.
(For over 900 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
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