Should Christians Confess “Sins” To Each Other?

by David J. Stewart | February 2020

James 5:14-16, “Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord: And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him. Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”

       No, absolutely not! There is considerable debate over the meaning of James 5:16 in the Holy Bible. I think the King James Bible translators intentionally used the word “faults” instead of “sins.” Like many other passages of Scripture, this passage can be interpreted multiple ways. I think the Bible is simply teaching us to admit when we are wrong, and fess up to our faults, rather than cover our wrongs toward others. Marital disharmony can hinder prayers. 1st Peter 3:7, “Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.” I think this is the context (of maintaining peace with one another) in which James 5:16 is speaking, and not confessing sins that don't involve that person. 

Granted, that is just my opinion. Most of the modern Bible revisions use the word “sin” instead of “fault,” which I humbly think is a mistranslation, influenced by the Satanic Roman Catholic sacrament of confession. Only God alone can forgive sins. So if only God can forgive sins, why would He want us to confess to men? Certainly, if we wrong someone, we should seek reconciliation and restitution with that person, before we can expect to make things right with God as His child. No believer can be wrong with his neighbour and right with God. Matthew 5:23-24, “Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.”

Another thought on the matter is that the word “confess” means “to say the same thing,” that is, “to agree with someone.” Perhaps the Bible is teaching us, as I mentioned, to agree with others when we are accused, and the allegation is true, rather than lie and cover it up. But again, this would only involve the person whom the offense was against. This is a controversial passage of Scripture, but I am confident that God did not intend for us to confess our skeleton closet to others. Everyone has sins. If it did mean “sins,” just for the sake of argument, then would we have to confess ALL our sins, including sins of thought? Or would we only be obligated to confess certain sins, selectively at our discretion? What sins should we confess to each other? Do you see the can of worms it opens if James 5:16 means “sins”?

Truly, those wise 54 men who translated the King James Bible in 1611 knew what they were doing, and understood the ridiculous idea of confessing our “sins” to one another. I respect the opinion of others in this matter, but I hold my own as well, which I have just shared with you. I will NEVER tell any human being all of my SINS! But if I ever did, you would have to spend about a month listening to me!!! I might tell my pet cat if I ever get If I hurt you, God forbid, then I ought to confess to you about it, in an effort to make things right. I am not saying that I am right in this matter, but it is what I sincerely believe from the Bible. It makes sense to me that we should confess our faults against those whom we have offended, so that our prayers will not be hindered. It is a matter of righteousness and love.


“Faith is the only righteous thing that I can do!”
—Pastor Jack Hyles, a quote from the MP3 sermon titled: God's Reversal Of Psalm 51

1st Corinthians 16:24, “My love be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen.”

Eternal Security


Confession Is Never A Requirement For Salvation

'The Gospel' In Just One Minute (by Pastor Max D. Younce)

John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son,
that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

“As a blind man has no idea of colors, so we have no idea of the manner by
which the all-wise God perceives and understands all things.”
—Isaac Newton (1642-1727)

Another Gospel Which Is Not Another (a red-hot MP3 by Dr. Curtis Hutson exposing Lordship Salvation)

Psalm 34:8, “O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.”

“If you have to look at your life to prove that you are saved, it proves that you're not!”
—Pastor Ralph Yankee Arnold; an excellent quote from the awesome YouTube sermon titled, “Why Lordship Salvation is WRONG! | MP3.”

Ye Must Be Born Again! | You Need HIS Righteousness! | Believe The Gospel