What Should a Christian do when he sins?

What must we do as Christians if we still sin from to time to time?

Thank you for your question. Unfortunately, Christians do continue to sin after salvation even though we have power over sin. Please see my related article entitled Do Christians Sin? However, God has made provision for this in His plan of salvation.

Just as John 3:16 is the most important verse in the Bible for unbelievers, 1 John 1:9 is the most important verse for believers. 1 John 1:8-10 says, “8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us.”

Although a believer’s eternal fellowship with God is never in question, his temporal fellowship can be quite volatile while still in this fleshly life. We can think of this as two concentric circles where the outer circle is our eternal fellowship, and the inner circle is temporal fellowship. Upon salvation, we’re moved from outside both circles to within the inner circle, where we can bring the ultimate glory to God through our spiritual gifts. At this point, we will never move outside of the outer circle again. However, in our daily walk, we can still sin, and sin can knock us out of the inner circle.

So, if we have eternal salvation, yet sin is keeping us from the ultimate experience of daily fellowship with God, we have a problem. How can we get back inside the inner circle? 1 John 1:9 gives us the answer. We must simply confess those sins which have formed a temporary barrier. We simply admit to our sins by naming them to God. This clears the way, and we’re immediately back in temporal fellowship with Him. In addition, there are further benefits for us:

Regular confession can actually help us to sin less. It’s like weighing every day’–we subconsciously turn down those desserts because we know that we will be weighing again tomorrow (by habit). Confession also helps us to avoid depression, without those lingering unconfessed sins hanging around to cause guilt (another sin). Finally, confession renews our liberty. We restore the freedom of our salvation through Christ Jesus our Lord.

I hope this helps.



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