Archive for the ‘Confession’ Category

December 5th, 2015

A Community of Confession

“Also many of those who were now believers came, confessing and divulging their practices.” Acts 19:18 (ESV)

The message of the gospel is essentially a great equalizer, calling us all to the recognition that we, as is true with every single man or woman that has ever existed, are by nature flawed. We give our affection and worship to created things that were meant to direct us toward the only pure object of worship, God. That sinfulness in our life is ever-present and must be uprooted in order for the grace inherent to the gospel to take its place and fulfill us as we were meant to be fulfilled.

We see this practice of confession in repentance in Luke’s account of the rebuke of the sons of Sceva. Having been beaten up by the demonic force they were trying to expel, their power was proven to be exponentially inferior to that of Christ and His disciples, calling many who had practiced magical arts to renounce both the practice of sorcery and any item attached to it. They wanted to both acknowledge their failure and walk forward in grace.

This should be the practice of every believer. Why are we so afraid to confess our failures? We all have them. We all have fallen short of the glory of God, and yet it seems that every time we gather together as the Church we pretend those truths aren’t taught in the Bible, preferring to allow people to see us we want to be seen rather than how we really are. The danger is, though, that if we do not confess our sin and burn the remnants of it, it will linger and likely take us captive once again.

Test the gospel today, dear friend. Find a trustworthy friend or spiritual adviser and get that mess out of you, allowing them to help you burn all your instruments of sin and step back on the path of righteousness. Everybody knows you are a sinner; that’s why Christ’s sacrifice was necessary.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Mobilization Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, December 5th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Acts, Confession, Repentance.
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September 22nd, 2015

Praying for Our Nation

“Then I turned my face to the Lord God, seeking him by prayer and pleas for mercy with fasting and sackcloth and ashes. I prayed to the Lord my God and made confession, saying, ‘O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, we have sinned and done wrong and acted wickedly and rebelled, turning aside from your commandments and rules.’” Daniel 9:3-5 (ESV)

Daniel prayed in brokenness and confession on behalf of his people. He took ownership for their spiritual health and vitality. Daniel sought the Lord God in prayer. He cried out with fasting and humility before the Lord for God’s mercy to be extended.

Revival is for believers who have become apathetic toward the things of God. Revival is designed by God to restore a believer’s passion and hunger for God and His agenda. When revival comes, it produces a byproduct known as a spiritual awakening. While revival is for believers, a spiritual awakening impacts unbelievers and brings them to the place of transformation.

The only way for our nation to genuinely change is for the lost to get saved and have a growing relationship with Jesus Christ. Pray for everyone, including national leaders and those in authority, that they may come to know the Lord personally and have a growing relationship with Him.

Can you imagine our nation fully yielded to the Lordship of Christ? Can you envision our nation passionate about pursuing God daily and living for His glory? Join me in praying for that vision to become a reality. Pray for our nation. Seek the Lord in brokenness and humility on behalf of our nation.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, September 22nd, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Confession, Daniel, Prayer.
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May 21st, 2015

Uncover Iniquity

“I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity; I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,’ and you forgave the iniquity of my sin.” Psalm 32:5 (ESV)

The prophet Nathan confronted King David about his sin by sharing a parable and announcing, “You are the man.” King David could have had Nathan killed, but instead, the king got real about his own sin before God. David acknowledged his sin, uncovered his iniquity, and confessed his transgressions to the Lord.

  • “Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin!” Psalm 51:1-2 (ESV)
  • “For you, O Lord, are good and forgiving, abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you.” Psalm 86:5 (ESV)

God forgave David for his sin of adultery and murder and enabled David to become a man after God’s own heart. David became a portrait of God’s grace and a mascot of God’s mercy.

Spend some time reviewing your life and invite the Lord to search your heart and to reveal any unconfessed sin in your life. The convicting work of the Holy Spirit will illuminate the areas of your life that are out of alignment with the holiness of God. Confess sin instantly and specifically. Claim the shed blood of Jesus over your life and walk in the victory you have through the completed work of Jesus on the cross.

Satan seeks to discourage you and to defeat you. Don’t give him a foothold. Keep walking in the light God gives you. Avoid sin. Take ways that are firm. Fear God and keep His commandments. Walk in the power of the Holy Spirit living in you.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, May 21st, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Confession, Forgiveness, Psalms.
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April 10th, 2015

Continual Realities

“And the Lord said to the people of Israel, ‘Did I not save you from the Egyptians and from the Amorites, from the Ammonites and from the Philistines? The Sidonians also, and the Amalekites and the Maonites oppressed you, and you cried out to me, and I saved you out of their hand. Yet you have forsaken me and served other gods; therefore I will save you no more. Go and cry out to the gods whom you have chosen; let them save you in the time of your distress.‘” Judges 10:11-14 (ESV)

God delivered some strong words to the people of Israel after their willful disobedience in spite of God’s perpetual gracious treatment. God rescued them and delivered them from their oppressors. They still chose to forsake God and served other gods.

As a result of their incessant rebellion, God told the people of Israel to go and cry out to the gods whom they had chosen. God encouraged them to let their gods save them in their time of distress. Of course, their gods would not respond.

The propensity to sin is a common thread throughout human history. Living in a fallen world and combating the sinful nature are continual realities. To live in victory requires forsaking sin and following Christ.

  • “But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.” Romans 13:14 (ESV)
  • “So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.” 2 Timothy 2:22 (ESV)

Your flesh craves sin. Crucify the flesh by starving the flesh. Be robed in the righteousness of Christ and walk in the power of His resurrection. Make no provision for the flesh. Flee sinful allurements and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace.

Riding HIS Wave,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, April 10th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Confession, Disobedience, Judges.
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December 28th, 2014

Confession and Cleansing

(Personal Note: Starting January 1, 2015, I will be transitioning from posting devotionals every day to posting devotional thoughts with you on a weekly basis that will continue to come to your inbox. My desire is to encourage you in your journey with God.)

“The Lord said to Moses, You shall also make a basin of bronze, with its stand of bronze, for washing. You shall put it between the tent of meeting and the altar, and you shall put water in it.’” Exodus 30:17-18 (ESV)

The second step to intimacy with God involves “the basin of water” found in the Old Testament Tabernacle. We are touring the furnishings within the Tabernacle. After acknowledging God’s gift of salvation through the atoning work of Jesus on the cross as symbolized by the altar of burnt offering, we now move to the basin of water.

The basin of water represents our cleansing provided by the shed blood of Jesus. In our prayer time, we move from praising God for His salvation gift to confessing sin and receiving His forgiveness.

How can a Christ follower stay clean while living in a dirty world? You stay clean by consecrating your life before the Lord daily. Being conscious of your sin is not enough to obtain cleansing. Confess your sin specifically and say the same thing about your sin that God says about it.

  • “For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.” Psalm 51:3 (ESV)
  • “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:8-9 (ESV)

Confess sin specifically and confess sin instantly. As soon as the Holy Spirit convicts you of specific sin in your life, confess it without hesitation. Don’t give the devil a club to hit you with. Choose to stay close and clean by practicing instant confession of sin. Don’t allow sin to linger.

Receive God’s forgiveness and walk victoriously in the strength Christ provides. You are a new creation.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, December 28th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Confession, Prayer, Tabernacle.
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December 16th, 2013

Where Are You?

“Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden. But the LORD God called to the man, ‘Where are you?’” Genesis 3:8-9 (NIV)

God cares about you personally and He cares about where you are spiritually. Your condition matters to Him. Throughout the Bible, the thread of God’s redeeming love can be traced. His love for you has no limits. God created you so that you can know Him personally and make His love known globally.

Adam and Eve rebelled against God and received immediate consequences. Their eyes were opened to recognize their nakedness and their fellowship with God was inhibited. Their sin hindered their unbroken communion with God. The poison of sin had tainted their spiritual condition.

Our God is compassionate. The depth of His love is evidenced as He pursues Adam with a personal question, “Where are you?” Of course, God knew where Adam was both physically and spiritually. His question was not to aid in locating Adam’s whereabouts in the garden. God asked the probing question to get Adam to assess his personal spiritual condition. God’s question was a question of compassion.

God could have left Adam and Eve to their own demise. God could have given them an extended silent treatment. Yet, God made the first move toward reconciliation. God went first to restore the fractured relationship.

Where are you? How is your love relationship with the Lord? Have you drifted in your daily devotion and intimacy with Jesus? Assess your current spiritual condition. Repent of anything that has hindered your fellowship with the Lord and return to your first love. Enjoy unbroken fellowship with the One who died to give you life eternal and complete.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, December 16th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Confession, Conviction, Intimacy with God.
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November 27th, 2013

Perfecting Holiness

“Since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.” 2 Corinthians 7:1 (NIV)

Imagine a bride, adorned with her beautiful white wedding dress, choosing to march down a muddy road before uniting with her groom. Purity and filth are not compatible. As the bride of Christ, we were made ready for our union with Christ through His atoning work on the cross. Positionally, we are clean and made fit for heaven. However, practically, we are still working out what God has worked in.

The muddy road of life requires that we purify ourselves from the contamination of our fallen world. We must guard our hearts and protect ourselves from the flaming arrows of the evil one. Staying clean while living in a dirty world mandates making wise decisions about what we say, think, and do. Our conversation and conduct must be consistent with the character of Christ being formed in us.

A clean life begins with receiving the nature of the Lamb of God at salvation. Upon conversion, we take on the nature of Christ and His desire for purity. That clean life is preserved as we purify ourselves from the filth of this world and embrace a healthy reverence for God. Fearing God means that we hold His opinion of us above all other opinions and expectations. Fearing God means to orient our lives to please Him above all others.

Are you living a life of moral purity? How’s your thought-life? Evaluate your conversation and your conduct. Are you living a life pleasing and honoring to God? Is there anything in your life that contaminates the life of Christ in you? Are you perfecting holiness through revering God? Confess known sin and embrace the life God has for you.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, November 27th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Confession, Holiness, Purity.
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September 18th, 2013

Uncovering Adultery

“He who conceals his sins does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy.” Proverbs 28:13 (NIV)

In our society, sexual temptation is prevalent. Christians are not immune to adultery. What if you have gone beyond your spouse for romance? What do you do when you violate the seventh Commandment by committing adultery? You can choose to continue to walk in deception or you can repent by doing what is right in God’s eyes.

Step 1:  Confess your sin. Living in sin will never produce the righteous life God desires. Be honest before God about your willful disobedience. In brokenness and humility, confess your sin instantly and specifically before the Lord. God wants you to say the same thing about your sin that He says about your sin. I am reminded of a statement by Dr. Johnny Hunt, “Whatever you cover, God will uncover. Whatever you uncover, God will cover!”

Step 2:  Confront your participant. Go directly to the person you are having an affair with and completely sever the relationship. This calls for drastic and fervent action. Amputate the limbs of lust and lies that connect you to this person. Do not leave a glimpse of hope for future interaction. Inform your participant that you have confessed your sin before God and that you will not continue living in disobedience to the Lord. Boldly and courageously announce, “It’s over!”

Step 3:  Comfort your spouse by becoming trustworthy. Once you have gone before the Lord to confess your sin and to receive His forgiveness, and after you have confronted your participant to end the relationship, in brokenness and humility, inform your spouse of the affair. Be prepared for an array of emotions to cascade from your spouse such as anger, hurt, devastation, revenge, and insecurity. You have violated your covenant relationship with your spouse. This is a big deal! In order for your spouse to ever trust you again, you will have to become trustworthy.

Consider incorporating a Christian counselor into your plan of restoration. Commit to never go beyond your spouse for romance. By God’s grace, do all you can to comfort your spouse by becoming worthy of trust.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, September 18th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Adultery, Confession, Ten Commandments.
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June 24th, 2013

Tabernacle Prayer: Basin of Water

“Then the LORD said to Moses, ‘Make a bronze basin, with its bronze stand, for washing. Place it between the Tent of Meeting and the altar, and put water in it.’” Exodus 30:17-18 (NIV)

The second step to intimacy with God involves “the basin of water” found in the Old Testament Tabernacle. We are touring the furnishings within the Tabernacle. After acknowledging God’s gift of salvation through the atoning work of Jesus on the cross as symbolized by the altar of burnt offering, we now move to the basin of water.

The basin of water represents our cleansing provided by the shed blood of Jesus. In our prayer time, we move from praising God for His salvation gift to confessing sin and receiving His forgiveness.

How can a Christ follower stay clean while living in a dirty world? You stay clean by consecrating your life before the Lord daily. Being conscious of your sin is not enough to obtain cleansing. Confess your sin specifically and say the same thing about your sin that God says about it.

  • “For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me.” Psalm 51:3 (NIV)
  • “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:8-9 (NIV)

Confess sin specifically and confess sin instantly. As soon as the Holy Spirit convicts you of specific sin in your life, confess it without hesitation. Don’t give the devil a club to hit you with. Choose to stay close and clean by practicing instant confession of sin. Don’t allow sin to linger.

Receive God’s forgiveness and walk victoriously in the strength Christ provides. You are a new creation.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, June 24th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Basin of Water, Confession, Prayer, Tabernacle.
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May 13th, 2013

Disposition Recognition

“The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’” Luke 15:21 (NIV)

There is power in the recognition of your true disposition. You can shroud your persona with a facade that exudes perfection while your inner life embodies disarray. Disguising the reality of your inner self has the potential to delay being found out. However, the manifestation of your true disposition will appear at some point. God has a way of exposing our current reality.

“Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden. But the LORD God called to the man, “Where are you?”
He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”
Gen 3:8-10 (NIV)

When God asked Adam and Eve, “Where are you?” He was not perplexed that He had misplaced the crown of His creation. His question was not one of confusion related to an inability to find the couple that He created. His question was to heighten their recognition of their true disposition. God wanted Adam and Eve to recognize their current reality.

The prodigal son identified his true disposition and responded with the confession, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.”

Consider the holiness of God. Are you sensing a need for confession in light of His holiness and your true disposition? His purity exposes our sinfulness. He graciously offers forgiveness. Get honest before God and encounter His love at a new level.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, May 13th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Awareness, Confession, Prodigal.
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