If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us. (1Jo 1:9-10 NKJ)
“Confession is good for the soul”—so says the old cliché. Like many clichés, it has the virtue of being true.
According to John, confession is not an option. We sin, and we confess, and God cleanses us from all sin. Augustine of Hippo once said, “the confession of evil works is the first beginning of good works.”
As the writer of Proverbs says, “He who covers his sins will not prosper, But whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy. (Pro 28:13 NKJ)
John is telling us that confessing our sin brings it out of darkness and into the light. Only there can God deal with it.
I said to myself, “I will confess my rebellion to the LORD .” And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone. Therefore, let all the godly confess their rebellion to you while there is time, that they may not drown in the floodwaters of judgment. Psalm 32:1-6
Be not ashamed to confess thy sins; and force not the course of the river. (Sir 4:26 KJA)