“Break off your sins!”

A penitent confessing his sins in the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church of the Bernardines in Lviv, Ukraine

He who covers his sins will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy.

Proverbs 28:13.

What is the use of my confessing a sin, if one day later I wilfully commit it again? It is true that God’s grace is inexhaustible, but whoever has experienced it will not continue in sin and go on living accordingly (cf. Romans 6:1.2). The command “Break off your sins!” is a word from God that was once addressed to a mighty Babylonian ruler. He had been warned in a dream and summoned the prophet Daniel to interpret the details of the dream for him.

The prophet ended with the words, “Let my advice be acceptable to you; break off your sins by being righteous, … there may be a lengthening of your prosperity” (Daniel 4:27). Even today there are serious warnings in the world in many spheres of life. They do not concern only other people; you and I have to attend to what God means by them. He calls upon us to “cease to do evil, learn to do good; seek justice, rebuke the oppressor” (Isaiah 1:16.17).

It all has to do with peace and righteousness, both before God and in every sphere of life. That will only succeed if we break with our sins and receive Jesus Christ into our life by faith. Then we obtain the strength to act according to His will and the steadfastness to reject all that God designates as sin and that leads to perdition. “The grace of God … teaches us … (that) we should live soberly, righteously and godly in the present age!” (Titus 2:11.12).

Image: By Водник – Transferred from ru.wikipedia to Commons.; (собственное фото), CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=4122259