Confession And The Misuse Of Romans 10:9

Rom 10:6 But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:)
Rom 10:7 Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)
Rom 10:8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;
Rom 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
Rom 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

The word confess means to “acknowledge” someone or something, and the word “confess, confessing, or confession” is used many times throughout scripture, and the word is also used in the church world as the recipe for salvation unto eternal life. It seems like every time the church world comes across the word confess they automatically assume that is one of the many steps toward salvation unto eternal life. So this begs the question; how does one possess the righteousness of God? Is it by confessing with the mouth AND believing with your heart? Or is it by repenting AND being baptized? Or is faith PLUS works? And what can be really confusing for some is what is said eight verses later, as we can see here it’s just by “hearing” the word of God.

Rom 10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

We can see that “faith cometh by hearing” the Word of God, and “with the heart man believeth unto righteousness”, you don’t need a ‘confession booth’, or to ‘confess your sins before men’ to be saved from the debt and penalty of sim, and justified unto eternal life, those are all man-made ways to exalt himself over other men, and God. The main purpose of this study is to point out how God uses the word “confess” throughout scripture, so what we will do is compare verses and show what the word “confess” and its other compound names mean.

Lev 5:5 And it shall be, when he shall be guilty in one of these things, that he shall confess that he hath sinned in that thing:
Lev 5:6 And he shall bring his trespass offering unto the LORD for his sin which he hath sinned, a female from the flock, a lamb or a kid of the goats, for a sin offering; and the priest shall make an atonement for him concerning his sin.

Israel believed God, and what the Word of God told them about the Redemption that is in the Redeemer, “and it was counted unto them for righteousness”, once an Israelite trusted in what God told them about their Redeemer, their “faith was counted unto them for righteousness,” this meant that they received 100% righteous standing in the sight of God unto eternal life, and when an Israelite brought his “trespass offering” unto the LORD, it was not for salvation from the debt and penalty of sin, and justification unto eternal life for his inner man, that was already a settled issue with God. God called Israel “my people” they became justified when they placed their faith in the gospel given unto them, their works never could give them eternal life, God’s justice can only respond to faith and faith alone in the Redeemer for salvation unto eternal life. And the Law, and the Sacrifices associated with it was for Israel’s sanctification ONLY.

Lev 16:21 And Aaron shall lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat, and shall send him away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness:
Lev 16:22 And the goat shall bear upon him all their iniquities unto a land not inhabited: and he shall let go the goat in the wilderness.

This type of “confession” was done to acknowledge their sins, the “offering” was not for their justification, this had to do with their walk as being a “royal priesthood and a holy nation”, when these justified Israelites who God called “my people” sinned, they were not acting like who God has made them to be which is a holy nation. This “cleansing” was for their outward man only, a Israelite would acknowledge their sin, they knew they were not walking worthy unto God like they ought, and they also knew they needed to remedy that problem, and make an “offering” unto God for their “transgressions”.

Lev 26:40 If they shall confess their iniquity, and the iniquity of their fathers, with their trespass which they trespassed against me, and that also they have walked contrary unto me;
Lev 26:41 And that I also have walked contrary unto them, and have brought them into the land of their enemies; if then their uncircumcised hearts be humbled, and they then accept of the punishment of their iniquity:
Lev 26:42 Then will I remember my covenant with Jacob, and also my covenant with Isaac, and also my covenant with Abraham will I remember; and I will remember the land.
Lev 26:43 The land also shall be left of them, and shall enjoy her sabbaths, while she lieth desolate without them: and they shall accept of the punishment of their iniquity: because, even because they despised my judgments, and because their soul abhorred my statutes.
Lev 26:44 And yet for all that, when they be in the land of their enemies, I will not cast them away, neither will I abhor them, to destroy them utterly, and to break my covenant with them: for I am the LORD their God.

Here you have the fifth course of punishment where God’s “people” are going through physical “punishment” for their “iniquity”, God has begun to walk “contrary” unto Israel for their sins, this is because they have “walked contrary” unto God and they were not walking like a holy nation of priests should. Even though Israel sinned greatly against God, God DID NOT “cast them away”, He made a “covenant” with His nation, and their trespasses could not break that covenant that God made with them, He was still “their God”.

1Ki 8:34 Then hear thou in heaven, and forgive the sin of thy people Israel, and bring them again unto the land which thou gavest unto their fathers.
1Ki 8:35 When heaven is shut up, and there is no rain, because they have sinned against thee; if they pray toward this place, and confess thy name, and turn from their sin, when thou afflictest them:
1Ki 8:36 Then hear thou in heaven, and forgive the sin of thy servants, and of thy people Israel, that thou teach them the good way wherein they should walk, and give rain upon thy land, which thou hast given to thy people for an inheritance.

Here we see that God said that if His “people” was to “confess” (acknowledge) His name, then he would do what He promised unto them. Israel had come to the point where they again doubted whether God was “with them or not”, and by an Israelite “confessing” God’s name he is calling upon God’s Jehovah-ness (God’s grace and mercy in being who Israel needs Him to be) in their sufferings. Because of Israel’s “walk” they were experiencing the 5 courses of punishments and its 5 installments that are associated with them.

Dan 9:4 And I prayed unto the LORD my God, and made my confession, and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments;
Dan 9:5 We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts and from thy judgments:
Dan 9:6 Neither have we hearkened unto thy servants the prophets, which spake in thy name to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, and to all the people of the land.
Dan 9:7 O Lord, righteousness belongeth unto thee, but unto us confusion of faces, as at this day; to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and unto all Israel, that are near, and that are far off, through all the countries whither thou hast driven them, because of their trespass that they have trespassed against thee.
Dan 9:8 O Lord, to us belongeth confusion of face, to our kings, to our princes, and to our fathers, because we have sinned against thee.
Dan 9:9 To the Lord our God belong mercies and forgivenesses, though we have rebelled against him;
Dan 9:10 Neither have we obeyed the voice of the LORD our God, to walk in his laws, which he set before us by his servants the prophets.
Dan 9:11 Yea, all Israel have transgressed thy law, even by departing, that they might not obey thy voice; therefore the curse is poured upon us, and the oath that is written in the law of Moses the servant of God, because we have sinned against him.
Dan 9:12 And he hath confirmed his words, which he spake against us, and against our judges that judged us, by bringing upon us a great evil: for under the whole heaven hath not been done as hath been done upon Jerusalem.
Dan 9:13 As it is written in the law of Moses, all this evil is come upon us: yet made we not our prayer before the LORD our God, that we might turn from our iniquities, and understand thy truth.
Dan 9:14 Therefore hath the LORD watched upon the evil, and brought it upon us: for the LORD our God is righteous in all his works which he doeth: for we obeyed not his voice.
Dan 9:15 And now, O Lord our God, that hast brought thy people forth out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand, and hast gotten thee renown, as at this day; we have sinned, we have done wickedly.
Dan 9:16 O Lord, according to all thy righteousness, I beseech thee, let thine anger and thy fury be turned away from thy city Jerusalem, thy holy mountain: because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and thy people are become a reproach to all that are about us.
Dan 9:17 Now therefore, O our God, hear the prayer of thy servant, and his supplications, and cause thy face to shine upon thy sanctuary that is desolate, for the Lord’s sake.
Dan 9:18 O my God, incline thine ear, and hear; open thine eyes, and behold our desolations, and the city which is called by thy name: for we do not present our supplications before thee for our righteousnesses, but for thy great mercies.
Dan 9:19 O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive; O Lord, hearken and do; defer not, for thine own sake, O my God: for thy city and thy people are called by thy name.
Dan 9:20 And whiles I was speaking, and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the LORD my God for the holy mountain of my God;

Daniel 9:4-17 deals with Israel “confessing” (acknowledging) their sins unto God and seeking His Jehovah-ness grace and mercy in their trespasses against God. We see Israel experiencing the effects of the 5 courses of punishments against them, and here we see Daniel praying and making “supplications” unto the LORD, not because he thought he was going to lose his salvation, he knew he already possessed God’s “righteousness”, what he wanted was God’s Jehovah-ness and mercy to be shown. Verse 18 makes it perfectly clear that Daniel knew that their works did not bring their “righteousness”, they already had that, they were seeking God’s “great mercies” to be done in their midst.

Mat 10:32 Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.
Mat 10:33 But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.

Israel was to acknowledge that Jesus was the “Christ”, and that they trusted in Him as being such, the Lord says that they are to “confess” Him “before men”, this confession deals with Israel acknowledging Jesus Christ in the midst of unbelieving Israel despite what persecutions it brought them, we see Peter and the other Apostles doing ‘denying’ that they knew Him the night He was Betrayed. They did not “confess” Him before men. And we also see this to be the case throughout the book of Acts.

Act 19:18 And many that believed came, and confessed, and shewed their deeds.
Act 19:19 Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together, and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver.
Act 19:20 So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed.

Here we see that this “confession” does not bring justification unto eternal life either, the people being spoken of here already have salvation, these saints that “believed” acknowledged their ungodly heathen “deeds”, and after they had begun to walk accordingly, the word of God “grew” among them and “prevailed” against the works of Satan against the church.

Rom 10:1 Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved.
Rom 10:2 For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge.
Rom 10:3 For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.
Rom 10:4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.
Rom 10:5 For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them.
Rom 10:6 But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:)
Rom 10:7 Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)
Rom 10:8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;
Rom 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
Rom 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
Rom 10:11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

Paul IS NOT dealing with the recipe for salvation here, he fully covered that in Romans 3:21-Romans 6, Paul is making known the status of Israel, Romans 9, 10 and 11 gives us a description of why Israel did not yet receive their inheritance, and how we became “grafted in” through Israel’s “fall”, instead of through the rise of Israel. Paul is explaining that the unrighteous Israelite had to understand his sinful standing, and the wrath of God against him, and that Jesus was the Redeemer, and he would receive the “righteousness” of God, and by confessing “Jesus” with their mouth, that Jew disassociating himself from that apostate nation, that Jew would be doing what the Lord said should take place once a Jew trusted Him as being their Christ, and that was “confessing” Jesus Christ “before men”. Some trusted in Jesus, but they did not “confess” Him because of being looked down upon, or fear of persecution, this is why in the next verse Paul quotes scripture of people being “ashamed” after they believed “on Him”. Romans 10:9 is perceived by many church-goers as being the verse to lead a soul to justification unto eternal life, but adding anything to just believing and placing our faith in the finished work of the cross, will be nothing more than a perversion of the gospel of our salvation. The gospel of our salvation is clearly made known throughout Paul’s epistles; we are saved by God’s grace, through faith, by Jesus Christ for all our sins past, present, and future.

Rom 3:22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
Rom 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
Rom 3:24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
Rom 3:25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
Rom 3:26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.

Eph 1:7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;
Eph 1:8 Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence;
Eph 1:9 Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself:
Eph 1:10 That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him:
Eph 1:11 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:
Eph 1:12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
Eph 1:13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,

By Rod Jones

  1. “For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation”

    To me the key to this scripture believeth UNTO righteousness… the proof that a life has actually done business with God is the radical change of a person believing UNTO a definitive change in the heart and its reflection in the life. Words mean little if not accompanied by the resulting work of transformation. I was an drug dealer, drug user and an alcoholic the change was instant and on going for over 42 years. Blessed be the name of Jesus!
    BT

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