On Sunday at JP (church) we introduced the theme of the week, this verse from James5:16
“Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.”
The IVP commentary has a great paragraph on this verse. It talks about confession as an honest, open and authentic sharing or our souls, including the bad stuff, not a ritual listing of sins (that sentence is unashamed plagiarism from Shannon at The Well – she writes good stuff).
Now this present passage helps us realise what a dramatic trasnformation of relationships James envisions. He points out the oneness we have weiht each other because of our common need for forgiveness. If we consciously stand together before God as sinners needing grace and wanting righteousness, that stance has compelling application to our relationships. Instead of judging each other, we will be driven to confess to each other. Instead of desiring to place guilt on each other, we will become eager to forgive each other. Instead of moving to criticise, we will move to intercede for each other. A spirit of reconciliation will pervade the church…