From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession
Concerning Confession and Satisfaction
What our opponents have expressed in the Confutation, namely, that a full confession is necessary for salvation, is certainly most false. For this is impossible. And what snares they cast upon the conscience when they require a full confession! For when will conscience be sure that the confession is complete?
Pulling It Together
This Lutheran confession comes from experience. Yet it also comes from Scripture. Luther, in particular, was tortured by guilt, and would therefore wear out his confessor with hours of lists of specific sins. After leaving confession, he would remember yet another sin and rush back to add that one to the list. He doubted his salvation, believing that God was still angry with him over some as-yet-unconfessed offense. Eventually, he came to realize that one can never confess all sins. But he also realized something more important.: this brand of confession is a human invention, not called for in Scripture. Scripture requires turning to the Lord in sorrow for sin—and faith in God to forgive.
Prayer: I believe in your love and forgiveness, Lord, for I believe in you. Amen.
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