James – Thursday, April 9
Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. Elijah was a man just like us. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops.
We have heard it said, confession is good for the soul. Here is the Biblical basis for that statement.
“Confession” simply means to acknowledge or admit something.
“Sins” refer to our slip-ups, our errors, our falls, our faults, our trespasses, our offenses. Therefore, we should find other believers (those who are safe and can be trusted) to whom we should admit our failings, and vice-versa. As we pray for each other in these areas, remarkable things take place. We are made whole.
Confession of sin to God provides forgiveness and cleansing (1 John 1:9); confession of sin to other believers provides healing and wholeness.
Concerning the power of believing prayer, it doesn’t take a super-saint to get results. Ordinary people can be mighty in prayer; just as someone like Elijah, who had feet of clay like the rest of us (cf. 1 Kings 19). Just as it’s not the size of the dog in the fight that matters, but the amount of fight in the dog; so it’s not the size of the prayer to God that matters, but the amazing ability and graciousness of the God who hears it.
Daily Devotional Book • James Application Questions
1. When was the last time you confessed a sin to another believer? What was the sin you confessed? When you confessed it, was there anything you held back?
2. List the safe and trusted people that God has brought into your life. Do you have a “confession” kind of relationship with them? If not, why not begin?
3. How does today’s passage encourage you to have confidence in prayer? For additional encouragement, read Hebrews 4:14-16 and Hebrews 10:19-22.