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Do we need to ask for forgiveness after we are saved?





1 John 1:9- "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness."

The Bible teaches two distinct applications of forgiveness. The first is that of our positional forgiveness in Christ through what is called the Doctrine of Justification. This forgiveness applies to our eternal standing with God and is reckoned to our past, present, and future sins as a free gift from God. 

The second is that of relational forgiveness. This is the application of forgiveness that the Apostle John is describing in 1 John 1:9 and it does not interfere with the free gift of salvation that we receive in our positional forgiveness. The purpose of relational forgiveness is to "purify us from all unrighteousness." The idea is that as we walk out our relationship with God we regularly collect residue in our soul from sin that we commit daily, and through confession we are able to be purified of this residue and enabled to draw closer to God in fellowship with the Holy Spirit. 

Confession is simple, it means to agree. When we confess our sins we are saying to God "I agree with your word that what I did was wrong." When we do this the Bible promises that God will accept our confession, forgive us, and cleanse us. This is described as the Doctrine of Expiation. Jesus said to pray "forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors." We need to confess our sin, especially the sin of unforgiveness. When we do this we are able to experience the awesome cleansing that God's Spirit provides through the promise of His Word.

Written by: Rev. Kyle Bailey M. Th.

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