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                            What instruction is given concerning confession of sin?

                                    "Speak unto the children of Israel, When a man or woman shall commit any sin that men commit, to do a trespass against the                                     Lord, and that person be guilty; then they shall confess their sin which they have done." Numbers 5:6, 7.

                    How futile is it to attempt to hide sin from God?

"But if ye will not do so, behold, ye have sinned again the Lord: and be sure your sins will find you out." Numbers 32:23

"Thou hast set our iniquities before Thee, our secret sins in the light of Thy countenance." Psalms 90:8.

"All things are naked and opened unto the eyes of Him with whom we have to do." Hebrews 4:13.

What promise is made to those who confess their sins?

"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." 1 John 1:9.

What different results attend the covering and the confessing of sins?

"He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy." Proverbs 28:13.

BEING DEFINITE IN CONFESSION

How definite should we be in confessing our sins?

"And it shall be, when he shall be guilty in one of these things, that he shall confess that he hath sinned in that thing." Leviticus 5:5.

    NOTE.—"True confession is always of a specific character, and acknowl- edges particular sins. They may be of such a nature as to be brought before God only; they may be wrongs that should be confessed to individuals who have suffered injury through them; or they may be of a public character, and should then be as publicly confessed. But all confession should be definite and to the point, acknowledging the very sins of which you are guilty."—Steps to Christ, p. 43.

How fully did Israel once acknowledge their wrongdoing?

"And all the people said unto Samuel, Pray for thy servants unto the Lord thy God, that we die not: for we have added unto all our sins this evil, to ask us a king." 1 Samuel 12:19. 88

When David confessed his sin, what did he say God did?

"I acknowledged my sin unto Thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and Thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin." Psalms 32:5.

GOD'S DELIGHT IN FORGIVING

What is God ready to do for all who seek for forgiveness?

"For Thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon Thee." Psalms 86:5. ,

Upon what did David rest his hope of forgiveness?

"Have mercy upon me, 0 God, according to Thy lovingkind- ness: according unto the multitude of Thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions." Psalms 51:1.

What is the measure of the greatness of God's mercy?

"For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is His mercy toward them that fear Him." Psalms 103:11.

How fully does the Lord pardon when one repents?

"Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon." Isaiah 55 :7.

What reason is given for God's readiness to forgive sin?

"Who is a God like unto Thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of His heritage ? He retaineth not His anger for ever, because He delighteth in mercy." Micah 7:18. (See Psalms 78:38.)

Why does God manifest such mercy and long-suffering toward men?

"The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance." 2 Peter 3:9.

SPECIFIC EXAMPLES

When the prodigal son, in the parable, repented and turned toward home, what did his father do?

"When he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him." Luke 15 :20.

How did the father show his joy at his son's return?

"The father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: and bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: for this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found." Verses 22-24.

`What is felt in heaven when a sinner repents?

"Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth." Verse 10.

What did Hezekiah say God had done with his sins?

"Behold, for peace I had great bitterness: but Thou hast in love to my soul delivered it from the pit of corruption: for Thou hast cast all my sins behind Thy back." Isaiah 38:17.

How completely does God wish to separate sin from us?

"Thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea." Micah 7:19. "As far as the east is from the west, so far hath He removed our transgressions from us." Psalms 103:12.

How did the people respond to the preaching of John?

"Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan, and were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins." Matthew 3:5, 6.

How did some of the believers at Ephesus testify to the 'sincerity of the confession of their sins?

"And many that believed came, and confessed, and sheaved their deeds. Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together, and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver." Acts 19:18, 19.

CONDITIONS OF FORGIVENESS

Upon what basis has Christ taught us to ask forgiveness? "And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors." Matthew 6:12. What spirit must those cherish whom God forgives? "For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: but if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." Verses 14, 15.

What exhortation is based on the fact that God has forgiven us?

"And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you." Ephesians 4 :32.

THE BLESSED GIVER AND RECEIVER

Through whom are repentance and forgiveness granted?

"The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree. Him hath God exalted with His right hand to be a prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and for- giveness of sins." Acts 5:30, 31.

In what condition is one whose sins are forgiven?

"Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is cov- ered. Blessed is the man unto whom the Lord imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile." Psalms 32:1, 2.