• James 5:16 (KJV) "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." Since the priest is supposed to be more of a "righteous man" than the sinner, it's logical that his prayer might be more effective.
  • "Why do Catholics confess their sins to a priest instead of confessing to God?" You misunderstand the whole NT doctrine of reconcilation. Please have a look at these links to get a clear and accurate answer to your question. The fact is that Catholics consider confession to be "whispering into the ear of Christ" Confession actually began in the OT: See Leviticus 5:5 The following 3 passages will also help. Luke 10:16. Matt 18:18, and John 20:23 Pax vobiscum,
  • The Bible teaches us that only by confessing our sins can we achieve forgiveness from God. How do we know this? Again, the Bible tells us these facts. Let's start with the Old Testament. In II Samuel 12:13, David confesses his sins to Nathan and was given assurance from Nathan that his sins were forgiven. From the New Testament we see many verses regarding confessing sins, however, we will stick to only the verse pertaining to the authority that God gave man. Look at John 20:22-23 it states that Jesus "breathed" on them and said: (John 20:22-23) Receive ye the Holy Ghost: Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained. How can anyone take this out of context, this passage is as clear as day? God has given man the authority, by the power of the Holy Spirit, to forgive sins. It is interesting to note that there is only two places in the Bible that the term "breathe" is found as an action performed by God. The first, of course, is in the Old Testament Genesis 2:7 when God "breathes" the breath of life into man. In John 20:22, God again "breathes" the gift of life into man (the gift of Eternal Life) in that He is giving His representatives the authority to assist in purifying the souls of men, thus giving them life. Let us look at verses to support confession: (Acts 19:18) - And many that believed came (to the Apostles), and confessed, and shewed their deeds. (Matt. 18:18) Again, Jesus gives the apostles authority by stating: Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever y shall loose on earth, shall be loosed in heaven. (2 Corinthians 2:10) Paul said: If I forgave anything, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave it I in the person of Christ." 2 Cor. 5:18-20) Paul states; (read the whole verse) And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation (the ministry of forgiving sins); to wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us; we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God. It is easy for us to say in our head "Jesus I am sorry for the sin I committed" however, this type of confession is hardly the type of confession Jesus intended for us--especially when the Bible states otherwise! To stand in front of a representative of Christ, whom God has given the authority to be His stand-in, and actually state aloud the sin, which was committed with true contrition, is not an easy thing to do--think about it? Once an individual goes to confession and actually states the sin aloud with true contrition, it is guaranteed that a relief and cleansing will immediately follow, as well as a strong sense of forgiveness--there is no doubt that you are forgiven--you know! Confession gives the penitent a fresh start to perhaps work with a strong passion to never commit the sin. Not only does confession cleans the soul, it is pleasing to God and He fills the soul with graces.
  • If a man can forgive sins....then why did God send jesus who was without sin to forgive catholics belive in what you want....go worship a priest and mary and saints.....go do wat you want.....i see fault in all man can forgive sins....or else jesus's death is an abomination...for he didn't really need to die on the cross if the the HOLY MEN right here to do it for us......
  • The Pope, all Bishops, priests and all Catholics begin every Mass with a penitential Rite which requires the generic confessionn that they are all sinners, NO group or rank pretends to be perfect. Jesus said the Church is a Hospital, for the sick, not for the self-righteous, and He blasted those of his time for acting "holier than thou" the worse kind of sinner, pointing out others' faults, ignoring one's own, the speck in your eye, the 2 by four in mine.
  • If the Church doesnt forgive your sin, God will never forgive. "If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained." John 20:23
  • First of all Catholics don't know anything about Jehovah God. The bible is kept away from them, only the Preist is allowed to look into it and read passages from it. Everyone within the congregation is forbidded to do so. Which is stupid, how can we worship God if we do not know him? By knowing him you must read the bible. So the reason why they confess their sins to a priest is because they are told to do so. If they had read the bible and understood it then they would confess to Jehovah God instead. And I know because I was once a Catholic. EDIT: If your going to downrate me then leave a comment! DON'T BE A COWARD/TROLL!
  • Responding to what you said Trueword_only_one, there are not "holy men" and MAN does not forgive sins. Man says "in the name of jesus not " in the name of BOBBY!" Jesus is in the confessional when confession is taking place. The priest uses the words of JESUS not the words of himeself. and really, we are confessing to JESUS not to a priest. and a priest cannot and will nnot forgive sins in the name of hiself. We also do not woship Mary or priests or saints. The only person US CATHOLICS worship is GOD. So please, if your going to try to make a point, make sure its a valid point. Because you have the whole image of the catholic church pictured wrong in your head.
  • Because there is no God, maybe?
  • The act of confession gives me the opportunity to humble myself, to say out loud that I have sinned. God already knows of my sin and will forgive me as soon as I ask for it.
  • Comments aren't working, so I will respond to skip_2_my_lou in an answer. I read the Bible every day with my family in a schedule set by the church. If you stay on track you will read the whole book in one year. It gives us the time to discuss the readings and get more out of them, rather than just speed read through the whole thing. Do you want me to lay out the whole schedule for you? I will if you want but it's a lot of typing. We pray together as a family at least once a day, sometimes more. We attend mass every week, sometimes more than once a week. During this, the season of advent, we light our advent wreath together, say the prayers and read the bible verses. We talk as a family about what this season is supposed to be about, and what it means to us. We try to live as Christ taught us, and when we fail we pray for forgiveness, go to confession and then try to right the wrong. We do all the things you say we should, we just take it further. Anybody can ask for forgiveness in their living room, but we make the extra effort to get to get off our butts, get to a church, and ask God for forgiveness THROUGH a priest. Stop being so judgemental and assuming you know everything about a person and their faith based on a few typed lines. You don't.
  • I'm not a Catholic, but I think a priest serves as mediator between man and God. Just a thought.
  • I feel sad for Skip 2 my Lou and similar folks who hve left the Catholic practice, know nothing about it and fall for some gobble-degook that is neither accurate, charitable nor just and certainly not helpful. For an simple example; a Catholic who attends Sunday Mass hears the entire Bible for a three-year cycle, and those of us who attend daily Mass have a two-year cycle- Old Testament, new Testament letters, Acts, Revelation and the third (second reading for the daily Mass) is a Gospel passage. We are encouraged to read the Bible, I started in 1957 in Catholic boarding school. So much for your ignorant clap-trap. Check your facts before you post please1
  • I don't feel I have to have a middle man to confess my sins. I can confess them to god directly. A middle man is not required.
  • Let us review the reality and biblical facts. (1) ONLY GOD IN CHRIST JESUS an forgive sin. TRUE. (2) Jesus picked sinful men Peter who denied him, cussed that he did not know him, the other apostles who were not at the Cross, except John, but JESUS did not withdraw that Authority from them, in fact re-iterated Peter's shepherd-feeding role in John 21, He had given him the Power of the Keys to bind and loose in Matthew 16 and to the whole Church in Mt. 18. TRUE. (3) That authority is still passed on through the Church, its bishops and priests and other folks, within Protestantism who can pronounce the forgivenss of JESUS CHRIST if not in the special sacramental way that RC and Oethodox clergy do it. FACT. (4) Please, several of you bigoted, blooper-making blooggers, get over the blundering- the gnorance and false information. Stop listening to bigoted teachers and read the Bible FOR YORUSELVES, all of ut, check the many quotes gove about and here: from James, Matthew, John and the Acts where SINFUL, WEAK former sinners like Peter and Paul wer given the authority to baptize, preach and offer Eucharist 9Lord's Supper) - see I Corinthians for Paul on what happens at Eucharist- and the Gospels of Mark, Matthew, Luke and John - John 6 for the EUCHARIST- Lord's Supper- wherein CHRIST gave His Body and Blood FOR THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS - Wow! human beings get to do that AND do this in memory of Me. Womw agian!!! HUMAN BEINGS HANDLE THE BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRIST, AND HIS POWER AND AUTHORITY TO PREACH AND ANNOUNCE HIS FORGIVENESS AND PARDON SINS in HIS NAME with His Authority. TRUE. (5) Problem with that, take it up with God the Father/ and the God-Man Jesus, and the Holy Spirit who wrote all this for us. FACT. (6) But check the facts in the Bible first so you can really HEAR the answer. TRUE. (7) Hint- do not waste your time attacking Catholicism your fight is with God and Jesus TRUE. (8) You will be a better CHRISTIAN and will have PEACE if you do that. FACT (9) Any other questions?
  • You people who say that priest are imperfect therefore cannot forgive our sins have your facts COMPLETELY wrong. Priests act as mediators between us and Christ! Jesus, in establishing the sarcrament of reconciliation, gave them the right to forgive through him. Priests do not forgive the sins, God does, they are just the middle men. A main reason Jesus wanted us to receive the sacrament is so we felt our confessions were being listened to! In our prayers, we can sometimes feel that God is not there or not listening to us. People do not feel like that during the sacrament of reconciliation. Reconciliation IS what we were TOLD to do in the Bible.
  • Why do Catholics confess their sins to a priest? doesn't this contradict the bible? Being a Catholic I understanding why many people don't want to confess sins to a priest. Isaiah 43:25,Hebrews 3:1 and 7:22-27, I Timothy 2:5 these objections can serve to deepen our understanding of the One,True Faith established by Jesus Christ. Lets start with Isaiah 43:25, which teaches us that it is, in fact, God who forgives sins. But if you read Leviticus 19:20-22 also in the old testament "If a Man lies carnally with a woman...they shall no be put to death...but he shall bring a guilt offering for himself to the Lord, to the door of the tent of meeting, a ram for a guilt offering. And the PRIEST shall make atonement for him...before the Lord for his sin which he has committed, AND THE SIN WHICH HE HAS COMMITTED SHALL BE FORGIVEN HIM. All Christians agree God forgives our sins but as you here in Leviticus, also in the Old Testament, the priest has been given the ministry of reconciliation. He mediates God's forgiveness to the sinner. Obviously, this does not take away from the fact that it is God Who does the forgiving. God is the efficient, or ultimate, cause of forgiveness. The priest is the instrumental cause. So God indeed forgives us our sins, as Isaiah 43:25 teaches. However, that doesn't eliminate the possibility of using priests to mediate that forgiveness to the world as Leviticus 19:20-22 teaches. Hebrews 3:1 it seems that Jesus is our only Priest right? I Peter 2:5,9 "And like living stones be yourselves built into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ...But you are a chosen race,a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's own people..."If Jesus is the one and only priest in th New Testament in the strict sense that Protestants believe, then we have a contradiction in Sacred Scripture,because I Peter teaches that all believers are members of a holy priesthood. The key to clearing up this difficulty is in understanding the nature of the Body of Christ. Believers do not take away from Christ;s unique Priesthood, rather, as members of His Body, we establish His Priesthood on earth. We are His hands and feet. Christ being the true high priest does not eliminate the possibility of there being many priests. We are priests as believers inasmuch as we participate in the one priesthood of Christ,as members of His Body. I Timothy 2:5: "For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus." Yes, Jesus is the one mediator between God and men. However, Christians are also called to be mediators for Him. When we intercede for mediators of God's love and grace in the one true Mediator, Christ Jesus(cf.I Tim. 2:I-7,4:16,Rom. 10:9-14). Now what about I John 2:2? "He is the expiation [propitiation] for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world." How can we demonstrate from Scripture the existence of a priesthood with the power to forgive sins, within the universal priesthood of all believers? I Peter 2:5,9. When St. Peter teaches us about the universal priesthood of all believers, he refers to Exodus 19:6 where God speaks of ancient Israel as "a kingdom of priests and a holy nation," a reference to the universal priesthood in the Old testament "church."But this did not preclude the existence of the Aaronic and Levitical priesthoods within that universal priesthood (cf, Ex.28 and Num. 3:1-12) In an anologous way, we have a universal "royal priesthood" in the New Testament, but we also have an ordained clergy who have priestly authority given to them by Christ to carry out His ministry of reconciliation(cf2Cor.5:17-21, Johm 20:21-23,James 5:16). Where does the Bible say there's a priesthood with the authority to forgive sins? John 20:21-23 Jesus said to them again,"Peace be with you.As the father has sent me, even so I send you."And when he had said this, HE BREATHED ON THEM,and said to them,"Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained." Christ the High Priest of the New Covenant, ordained the apostles to continue His priestly mission. In John 20;22-23,Jesus them emphasizes this essential part of the priestly ministry of the apostles: forging men's sins in the name of Christ."If you forgive the sins of any,they are forgiven;if you retain the sins of any, they are retained." THIS IS CONFESSION. The only way the apostles can either forgive or retain sins is by first hearing those sins confessed, and them making a judgement as to whether or not the penitent should be absolved. Lets say a woman confesses adultery,"When the priest asks her if she's sorry for her sin and resolved to turn away from it, she says she's not. The priest would then be bound to 'retain' her sins. One has to be truly sorry for his or her sins in order to be forgiven". Do we see any examples of the apostles or church elders actually forgiving sins? 2 Corinthians 2;10: "Any one whom you forgive,I also forgiven. What I have forgiven, if I have forgiven anything, has been for your sake in the presence of Christ." James 5:14-16 Is any among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and lit them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord; and the prayer of faith will save the sick man, and the Lord will raise him up; and if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore,confess your sins to one another and pray for one another that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man has great power in its effects. We must go to the "elders," not just anyone, to receive this "anointing" and the forgiveness of our sins. There are two reasons we know St. James is not saying we should confess our sins to just anyone. First, he's just told us to go to the elder, or priest, in verse14. Then, verse 16 begins with the word "therefore." The word therefore tells us that this statement depends on the verse(or verses) before it-in this case, it connects verse 16 back to verses 14 and 15. It's the elder to whom St. James is telling us to confess our sins. Catholics understand that it isn't easy confessing our sins to a man. "But when you understand what your doing you will walk out of the confessional felling like your walking on air. And remember when the priest says 'I absolve you of your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit,'there are two people speaking at the same time; the priest, and Jesus Himself, Who loves you more than words could ever say."
  • If everybody started going to God directly, the big business will be closed. So the mediator business has to stay..... That's all about it.
  • Encyclopedia John has provided the biblical reason, so there is no need to address that part of the equation. But maybe they like to confess to the priest because discussing a problem with another person is therapeutic.
  • i am catholic and work with these 3 guys that are Non donominational and they bash the catholic beliefs and think its wrong we confess sins to a priest. How can i defend myself and beliefs to these people?
  • It's kind up like a job, you have to go up the chain of command. I guess that's why they pray to mary instead of god too, seriously, I don't know.
  • They confess to God, the priest is there to enable Catholics to think about their sins and feeling true remorse. See Padre Pio, he would not absolve you when he felt that people avoided telling EVERYTHING.
  • cause their church teaches them to do that

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