In my own devotional time I wrote down some thoughts about James 5:16 (below)
- Benefits of confession, group prayer, and the prayer of an honest person. 16Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. (NIV). Look at the progression, this first, then this and finally this.
- First: confess your sins to each other. Second: pray for each other. Third: so that you may be healed. [Because] the prayer of a righteous man (human being) is powerful and effective.
- Confession means being honest and vulnerable about me. This can be painful and humiliating. Others become aware of my hidden faults, those sins I didn’t want to expose to anyone. Done properly (without the glorification of the wrongdoing) confession can provide a truthful humility and a longed for deliverance that will spill into every area of my life (spiritually, mentally and emotionally, and physically). Confession done improperly is an empty exercise. Tell the truth and don’t whitewash it. Tell the truth and don’t exaggerate it. Tell the truth with sincere repentance seeking the Lord’s healing. Motives matter in confession. Personal motivation is one thing but Holy Spirit generated confession brings satisfaction and freedom beyond compare. And finally, as a Jewish maxim states: the prayers [and confessions] of the righteous are short.