I confess that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God (Romans 10:9).
My salvation is dependent upon it. My standing in grace is sustained by it. When the Father, through the Holy Spirit, revealed to me that Jesus is the Son of the living God, I believed and confessed that it was so. The faith that prompted me to confess with my mouth, secured my salvation. The faith by which I continue to confess, is the faith that keeps me secure in Christ. I am saved by faith, and I am kept by faith. This, I confess.
I confess that I am a son of God.
Simon, son of Jonah, became Simon, son of God, by his confession. I, Morris, son of Williams, became Morris, son of God, when I confessed Jesus to be the Christ, the Son of the living God. Hallelujah! I confess that all the privileges and responsibilities of sonship are now mine. Christ, the Son, confers on me the rights of sonship. It all happened when I confessed Him to be the Christ. I confess that sonship brings security.
I also confess that sonship brings suffering.
It brought suffering to Jesus, and it will bring suffering to me. Why? Because God's purposes cannot be accomplished without sacrifice, self-denial, and suffering. To Jesus, God's only begotten Son, it meant the cross, that whosoever believeth in Him might be saved. To me, a son by confession, it means forsaking all, that the untold might hear the truth about Jesus. For how shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed, and how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard, and how shall they hear without a preacher, and how shall they preach except they be sent? There cannot be birth without suffering. Neither can there be new birth without sacrifice, self-denial, and suffering. If the world is to hear and the lost are to be saved, there are some somebodies who have to suffer ... and those somebodies are the sons of God!
Simon Peter did not think so. As he reveled in the glory of his confession, he heard the Christ, the Son of the living God say, "I must suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed and raised again the third day." Peter couldn't believe what Jesus was saying. The Son of God suffer? The Son of God die? Never!
"Be it far from thee, Lord, this shall not be unto thee." In other words, what Peter was saying was, "Suffering is not for sons . .. least of all for the Son of the living God!"
But Jesus' reply was significant. "Get behind me, Satan, thou art an offense unto me, for thou savor est not the things that be of God, but those that be of men!" Peter was talking like a man of the world and not like a son of God. Men prompted by Satan put personal comfort and physical salvation before the will of God. Not so God or the Son of God, or, for that matter, the sons of God. Jesus said,
"If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow me, for whosoever will save his life shall lose it, and whosoever will lose his life for my sake will find it" (Matthew 16:24,25).
Therefore, I confess that the will of God is more important than my physical well-being.
I confess that I put the salvation of the lost and the building of Christ's Church above my desire for physical comforts, social happiness, and personal deliverance. I am willing to go to the wilderness and be exposed to temptation. I am willing to work where fever is rampant and medical facilities inadequate. I am willing to leave Father and Mother and go to the ends of the earth that the lost may hear. I am willing to suffer, because I confess that winning the world to Christ is more important than my happiness, my health, or my home.
However, I am quick to confess the blessings that come when men seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness.
How good God is! How faithful He is to His promises! He has said He will never leave us nor forsake us ... and He doesn't. I have never had to go hungry. God has given me a wonderful wife and loving children. I defy anyone to be happier than I am, or to enjoy health more than I do. These are the glorious "things added" to those who put the Kingdom first.
We have a right to confess our healing ... and those who confess in faith are rewarded with health. We have a right to ask for daily bread ... and those who confess in faith are rewarded with a supply of all their needs. We have a right to confess victory over sin ... and those who confess in faith triumph over temptation. Praise God!
While some confess for the wrong reasons, that they might consume it upon their own pleasures, we must not forget the words that precede that statement in James. He says, "Ye have not because ye ask not." We have every right to ask for, and to receive, the things that God wills his sons to have. Many sons live far below their privileges and rights simply because they "ask not." God help us to confess a good confession ... knowing that if we ask anything according to His will, He heareth us!
I confess my sins ... to God and to my brethren.
I do this because I know that if I confess my sins, God is faithful and just to forgive my sins, and to cleanse me from all unrighteousness. How wonderful to have an advocate who pleads the son's cause before the Father! I confess that it is wonderful assurance to know that I have an older brother who sees to it that my sins are covered when I confess.
I confess my faults to my brethren, too. The Bible tells me to do it. Thank God for understanding brethren who hold me up in prayer so that I may be forgiven and healed. Healing is for those who confess their faults to God and to their brethren. We deny ourselves healing and forgiveness if we say we have no sin or sickness. It is by confessing that we have need, that deliverance comes.
And finally, I confess that I am a stranger and a pilgrim on this earth. Abraham did. So did Isaac and Jacob.
"These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country" (Hebrews 11:13,14).
I confess that this world is not my home. I desire a better country, that is, an heavenly. The mark of the confessor is that he puts little store on things in this world. He accepts God's blessing, and is content with having food and raiment. His affections are on things above, for that is where his treasure is. I don't want my lifestyle to belie my confession. When I declare that I am seeking those things that are above, I want those who hear me to believe it, not because I am saying it, but because I am demonstrating it! I'm grateful for, and I accept, everything that God gives me in this world. But I don't want "the things that are in the world" to hinder me from fulfilling God's will for my life. Neither do I want any material thing that I possess to make the confession that I am a stranger and a pilgrim, a sounding brass and a tinkling cymbal.
So, I confess Jesus to be the Christ, the Son of the living God, and, by so doing, I become a son of God. I confess that I am a son of God through faith in His death and resurrection and, by so doing, I become heir to all the privileges and responsibilities of sonship. I confess that His will takes precedence over health, happiness, and home and, by so doing, I become an instrument in His hands to fulfill His purpose and build His Church. I confess my sins and my faults to God and to my brethren and, by so doing, receive healing and forgiveness that are mine by my confession. And finally, I confess that I'm a stranger and a pilgrim on this earth and, by so doing, set my affections on things above where Christ sitteth at the right hand of God.