Have you ever witnessed a parent pushing a child to apologize for something when you can clearly tell they do not feel sorry? Confession needs to come from our heart or it really isn’t confession, at least it is a seriously flawed confession. Every day we sin and break the relationship with have with God and often with others. We need to confess, and truly repent of our sin so we can have restored fellowship with God. This quote from Whiter than Snow by Paul David Tripp brings that point to life.
“I admitted what I said was wrong, and that’s a good thing, but there are two potential flaws in this confession. The first is it could be that the only reason I admitted to this wrong was that I was caught red-handed. I may not have been grieved at all by what I’d said. I may have confessed simply because I was in trouble. The second flaw could be that the confession was only a confession of the behavior (and that’s a good thing as far as it goes) but not the confession from a heart that’s behind the behavior. Here’s the point. It’s only when I’m grieved by my sin and acknowledge that this sin is heart-deep that my confession will be followed by the turning of repentance. You see, I speak unkindly to my wife not because my schedule is busy or because she’s less than perfect, but because there are things that I want (such as success, control, approval) and when she gets in the way of these things, I’m immediately irritated.”
“What results when you confess because you’re deeply grieved by what you’ve done? What happens when you acknowledge that your physical sin is caused by a heart that’s run amok? The result is that you turn, really turn. What do I mean? I mean that you don’t just turn away from the physical sin pattern, but your heart turns to God in new and deeper ways. What does this mean? It means that rather than being driven by the craving of the delivery of your little kingdom desires by the people in circumstances around you, your heart begins to be motivated by big kingdom purposes. True confession always results in living for something bigger.”