“Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man has great power to prevail.” – James 5:16
I was listening to one of the pioneers of what is now called Contemporary Christian Music. Back in the late 60s and early 70s it was called Jesus Music, and one early singer/songwriter was (is) named Nancy Honeytree. And I had the privilege, in the early 70s, to attend a concert she held at a local university. Anyway, the Honeytree song I heard was “Take me back (and say you told me so).” I’ve searched the Internet for the lyrics but to no avail.
What I found interesting about this song is that Honeytree was asking God to take her back; sin separates us from God. We don’t lose our salvation, but God becomes distant. Our go-to verse to receive forgiveness is “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9) God’s purification and righteousness restore our closeness with Him.
The words, “take me back,” also tell us that she needed to go back to the spot where she sinned, and see where God’s Word told her that her action would be a sin. Then she promised to make her sin public so that she would be clean and in harmony with God.
This message floored me. Scripturally, her song is a bullseye. Her lyrics are a message we rarely hear preached today and one I needed to hear. I would add – maybe it’s in her song – that a public confession frees a person from all the power which that sin held. Even when a sin has been forgiven, once it comes into the light, Satan no longer has that sin to take to the Father to accuse us1.
This confessing assumes that the person or people to whom you confess to are truly obedient believers. Spoken to the wrong group, a confession becomes gossip and judgment. So, for this and many reasons, we need to be in a God-fearing congregation.
I know this is a small message, but maybe it will help someone. Take me back, and tell me you told me so.
You may like: Confess your sin, quickly.