Asking God to forgive your sins is an important process. It is important that you admit that you did wrong and regret what you did. You must come to God, pray using Scripture, and ask Him to forgive you. Then you have to believe he did it. After you are forgiven, you work to leave your sin behind and live a new life.
Table of Contents
- 1 Admit your sin
- 2 To ask for forgiveness
- 3 Go forward
Admit your sin
Name and confess the thing you did.
Before you ask for forgiveness, you must specifically state the thing you did wrong and admit that you did it. When you’re feeling guilty, you may be tempted to make excuses or deny that you did something wrong. Forgiveness is impossible unless you admit that you did something wrong. You might think, “I suppose maybe I shouldn’t have lied, but I had a really good reason for it, and it was just a little lie.” You’re trying to justify what you did instead of admitting it. Start praying. “Father, I took €5 from my brother without asking him.” You called the sin (stealing) and you took responsibility for it without making excuses.
Tell God you know what you did wrong.
Once you have stated what you did, it is important to realize that it was wrong. It’s possible to say what you did without believing that you were wrong. Admitting you did it is useless unless you admit that you know it was wrong. You will not be forgiven if you say, “I slept with my co-worker even though I’m married, but I don’t see what’s wrong with that.” You have to recognize what you’ve done as sin, as something about it God is unhappy.
Say you’re sorry for what you did.
It’s still not enough to say what you did and admit it was wrong. Now you have to apologize for that. You should be genuinely sorry for what you have done, and express that regret in what you say to God. It’s important that you actually feel sorry when you say you’re sorry. Asking God for forgiveness is not like saying sorry to a brother without really meaning it. It must be sincere from the heart. Say something like, “I know what I did was wrong and I feel really bad about it. I’m sorry I broke up our relationship. I’m sorry I sinned against you.” .
To ask for forgiveness
Pray about what you are feeling.
You must always be honest when asking for forgiveness. If you think God already knows how you feel, there’s no point in lying to him. Tell him about the guilt you feel for your sin and that being apart from him has made you sad. Say, “God, I’m sick knowing I’ve caused you pain.” It can be good to pray aloud to God so that you explicitly say what’s on your mind instead of just thinking it.
Use Scripture in your prayer.
God’s Word is powerful and He encourages you to use it when you speak to Him. Because the words in the Bible come from God, they provide a guide to how to talk to God. Search your Bible or the internet to find scriptures about asking for forgiveness. Use these to make your prayer meaningful. Look up these scriptures and pray them in your prayer: Romans 6:23, John 3:16, 1 John 2:2. These scriptures talk about forgiveness. The New Testament is full of truth about forgiveness. Search for scriptures that speak to you about the forgiveness you seek. You can repeat scripture verbatim or paraphrase it so that it has more meaning to you.
Ask God to forgive you for what you have done.
Just like you would with other people, after you say you’re sorry, you have to ask to be forgiven. There is no special prayer that you must pray in order to win God’s forgiveness. All you have to do is ask Him to forgive you through Jesus Christ and believe that He will forgive you. Say to God, “I denied to my friend that I knew you. It was wrong and cowardly of me to do that. I’m sorry I didn’t tell him about your love for us. Please forgive me for mine weakness at this moment.” You don’t have to ask, beg, or repeat yourself over and over again. Asking God once, with a sincere heart, is all you have to do.
Tell God you believe He has forgiven you.
Faith and forgiveness go hand in hand. It’s no use asking for forgiveness but not believing that God will forgive you. God says that when we ask forgiveness from a sincere heart, He forgives with confidence. Tell yourself you believe Him and tell God you believe Him. 1 John 1:9 says, “But if we confess our sins, then God will be found faithful and righteous: He will forgive our sins and cleanse us from every evil thing.” Say this Scripture to God and believe it. It is important to remember that sins that are forgiven are forgotten. Hebrews 8:12 says, “I will forgive them their iniquities and remember their sins no more.”
Ask forgiveness from people you’ve hurt with what you’ve done.
Although sin ultimately breaks our relationship with God, it often hurts other people as well. When you know that God has forgiven you, it is important to ask for others’ forgiveness. Tell the person you’re sorry you hurt them and ask them to forgive you. Remember that you cannot force someone to forgive you and you cannot earn it. The person will either accept that you’re sorry for what you did and forgive you, or they won’t. Don’t push him if he refuses to forgive you. Don’t make him bend over. If you have apologized and asked someone for forgiveness, you need to release yourself from the blame. Even if the person doesn’t forgive you, you’ve done your duty by trying to make amends.
Regret the wrong behavior.
When you have been forgiven by God for your sin and by others for the pain you have caused, you must turn from that sin. Make a conscious decision that after forgiveness you will not intentionally commit the same sin. You must remember that you will always sin, but it is important to say so the moment you turn away. The only way to walk away from habitual sin is to tell yourself you won’t do it again. Acts 2:38 is helpful in this process. It states, “Peter said to them, Repent, and be baptized each of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Forgiveness is an important step, but moving away from sin is also necessary to stay close to God.
Work on stopping yourself from doing the same wrong thing again.
Part of your goal of following Christ is moving you further from sin, and that takes commitment work. You will not stop sinning immediately, but if you work at it, you will become stronger. In Matthew 5:48, God challenges you to become perfect just as He is perfect. It’s a goal you have to work towards. Find people who can help you avoid repeat sins. Learn the scriptures to fight temptation. Remember that sins only harm you and you don’t need them. Spending time reading your Bible, praying to God, and talking to other Christians are all extremely important to living a sin-free life.