Why isn't confession permanent

God is outside of time; not bound to a linear series of events like human are. So, for example, if an item is blessed by a priest, it is blessed for all time. There is no need have that object periodically re-blessed. One-and-done. The same goes for some of the sacraments, such as Holy Orders, Matrimony, Baptism, and Confirmation.

I recall a radio program where a priest consoled a caller who was unaware of the severity of a loved one’s death and didn’t arrange for their Anointing of The Sick (last rites) in time. This priest used the same logic as mentioned above; namely God is outside of time and if we pray for the good intention of a departed soul after their exit, our good intentions are still efficacious, because in God’s eyes, everything happens at once.

Why wouldn’t absolution of sins work the same way? One is constantly in and out of a state of grace during their lifetime. As I understand things today, the only thing that matters is one’s state of grace at the moment of death (I’m talking Heaven-bound vs. the alternative). Why wouldn’t God recognize a person’s state of grace achieve at some point in their life coupled with the desire to behave in a sinless manner, rather than the linear progression of events inside the bounds of time. It’s hard for me to wrap my head around the idea that God leaves His timeless state to enter into a time-bound moment to consider if sin occurred in between that last two trips to the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

Because our desires are not permanent. One could, as you stated, generally desire to be with God. But at times, they could desire to commit grave sin.

And it is no so much God leaving timelessness to enter into time bound reality, but, at our deaths, leaving time bound reality to enter into timelessness. And that occurs at a specific moment. We do not gradually enter into this timelessness, such a thing would be meaningless to our corporal existence. We leave it at a specific moment, and in a specific condition of Grace.

What Confession, and indeed, all the other Sacraments do, is to give the gift of Grace to our Soul that we more strongly desire not to sin.

The need for sacramental absolution is, at least for some of us, an incentive to avoid sin. If God had made absolution “permanent” in the manner you suggest, I think that many people would abuse this knowledge and after having been absolved, grant themselves the license to live like devils. God doesn’t want us to drift farther away from him, but to draw nearer and nearer, to become like himself.

Hi!
…no wrapping needed…

…when we sin we actively reject God’s Authority and Grace… if we sin once a day or hundreds of times a day the rejection is the same… should God take it for granted that when we confessed our sin way back right before our first Communion we were grieved, contrite, and sorry for offending Him till the Parousia? …did that first time that we received the Sacrament of Reconciliation made us strong enough to avoid every temptation and every future opportunity to sin?

God is Omnipotent and Omnipresent and Infinite… man, on the other hand, is not only finite, but quick to seek short-cuts and stubborn enough to place his eternal Salvation in jeopardy for a cheep thrill.

It is not God who is short on Mercy, it is man who is bent on theology of “did it my way.”

Maran atha!

Angel

Actually, it does work that way. When you are forgiven for a particular sin, it is forgiven always. :thumbsup:

(Of course, if you sin and haven’t asked forgiveness for that sin, it is not forgiven.)

It’s hard for me to wrap my head around the idea that God leaves His timeless state to enter into a time-bound moment to consider if sin occurred in between that last two trips to the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

It’s not the ‘progression of sins’, it’s the question of whether a particular sin has been repented of and forgiven. :shrug:

Not the same. Blessed objects can lose their blessings, such as when they’re sold or desecrated.

Of the Sacraments, only Baptism, Confirmation and Holy Orders are permanent. The rest can be repeated. This is because these three Sacraments impart a character, which is indelible. The other Sacraments do not.

I recall a radio program where a priest consoled a caller who was unaware of the severity of a loved one’s death and didn’t arrange for their Anointing of The Sick (last rites) in time. This priest used the same logic as mentioned above; namely God is outside of time and if we pray for the good intention of a departed soul after their exit, our good intentions are still efficacious, because in God’s eyes, everything happens at once.

Why wouldn’t absolution of sins work the same way? One is constantly in and out of a state of grace during their lifetime. As I understand things today, the only thing that matters is one’s state of grace at the moment of death (I’m talking Heaven-bound vs. the alternative). Why wouldn’t God recognize a person’s state of grace achieve at some point in their life coupled with the desire to behave in a sinless manner, rather than the linear progression of events inside the bounds of time. It’s hard for me to wrap my head around the idea that God leaves His timeless state to enter into a time-bound moment to consider if sin occurred in between that last two trips to the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

God does not leave a timeless state (he cannot, otherwise, he would not be God); rather, we exist in a linear state. God has ordained the moment of death as the fixed point in our existence that determines our final destiny.

Besides, God is no cruel taskmaster. One who completely strives to live a virtuous life of grace, falls into mortal sin, repents and perseveres is more likely than not, one of the elect. We do not know who of us are the predestined, but the teaching on predestination does point to some signs, such as a persistent love for God and neighbour, love for the Church and Sacraments, and devotion to the Blessed Mother. God doesn’t play “gotcha” with us. If one died in the state of mortal sin, it was probably a long time coming (from our perspective), but from God’s perspective, this person was already reprobate from eternity, and probably lived a life of continual hard-heartedness and mortal sin.

(Yes, again, for those who don’t know, surprise! Catholicism teaches reprobation, i.e. predestination to hell. And no, it’s not what you think.)

Once a sin is forgiven it is forgiven forever. There is a story about a certain visionary who was seeing and conversing with Jesus. The priest wanted to test her. He said, “Ask Jesus to tell him what I said in my last confession.”
A week later the visionary came back. “Jesus said he forgot.”
The point is that once a sin is forgiven in confession then it is forgiven forever.

It is hard to confess a contingent future sin. God knows of it already, but we do not. The onus is upon us to recognize such sin in our future (since we currently are bound to time), confess it and receive absolution of that particular sin.

Maybe I need another cup of coffee this morning, but are you suggesting that we can confess a sin we haven’t yet committed??? Umm… no. :rolleyes:

God may be “outside” of time, but that DOESN’T mean that God has NO use for time. Jesus CONSTANTLY referred to his HOUR, and their HOUR, We don’t know the HOUR etc. It is a vital part of our Human Nature (time) WE are not GOD. We must exist within TIME, and work out our Salvation in time.

Sounds to me like the op is leaning towards “once saved always saved”?

It is not true that “the only thing that matters is one’s state of grace at the moment of death”. One cannot receive any merit when in a state of mortal sin and that sinful state also leads one to more sin. Christ called all men to be like him, to be images (icons) of Christ. The Council of Lyons and of Florence asserted: the souls of the damned are punished with unequal punishments (“poenis tamen disparibus puniendas”). Also, this is a dogma of faith: [LIST]
A just man merits for himself through each good work an increase of sanctifying grace, eternal life (if he dies in a state of grace) and an increase of heavenly glory.[/LIST]

Catechism:

1855 Mortal sin destroys charity in the heart of man by a grave violation of God’s law; it turns man away from God, who is his ultimate end and his beatitude, by preferring an inferior good to him. …

1865 Sin creates a proclivity to sin; it engenders vice by repetition of the same acts. This results in perverse inclinations which cloud conscience and corrupt the concrete judgment of good and evil. Thus sin tends to reproduce itself and reinforce itself, but it cannot destroy the moral sense at its root.

2013 "All Christians in any state or walk of life are called to the fullness of Christian life and to the perfection of charity."65 All are called to holiness: "Be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect."66

[INDENT]In order to reach this perfection the faithful should use the strength dealt out to them by Christ’s gift, so that . . . doing the will of the Father in everything, they may wholeheartedly devote themselves to the glory of God and to the service of their neighbor. Thus the holiness of the People of God will grow in fruitful abundance, as is clearly shown in the history of the Church through the lives of so many saints.67
[/INDENT]

…actually, man has been predestined for Salvation even before the Beginning of Creation, in Jesus Christ. The difference between an elect and a non-elect lies in Faith:

9 That was the true light, which enlighteneth every man that cometh into this world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. 11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not. 12 But [size=]as many as received him[/size], he gave them power** to be made the sons of God**, to them that believe in his name. 13 Who are born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. (St. John 1:9-13)

17 For God sent not his Son into the world, to judge the world, but [size=]that the world may be saved by him[/size]. 18** He that believeth in him is not judged**. But he that doth not believe, is already judged: because he believeth not in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 And this is the judgment: because the light is come into the world, and** men loved darkness rather than the light**: for their works were evil. 20 For every one that doth evil hateth the light, and cometh not to the light, that his works may not be reproved. 21 But he that doth truth, cometh to the light, that his works may be made manifest, because they are done in God. (St. John 3:17-21)

3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with spiritual blessings in heavenly places, in Christ: 4 As [size=]he chose us in him before the foundation of the world[/size], that we should be holy and unspotted in his sight in charity. 5 Who** hath predestinated us unto the adoption of children through Jesus Christ unto himself: according to the purpose of his will: 6 Unto the praise of the glory of his grace, in which he hath graced us in his beloved son. 7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the remission of sins, according to the riches of his grace, 8 Which hath superabounded in us in all wisdom and prudence, 9 That he might make known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure, which he hath purposed in him, 10 In the dispensation of the fulness of times, to re-establish all things in Christ, that are in heaven and on earth, in him. 11 In whom we also are called by lot, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things according to the counsel of his will. 12 That we may be unto the praise of his glory, we who before hoped Christ: 13 In whom you also, after you had heard the word of truth, (the gospel of your salvation); in whom also believing, you were signed with the holy Spirit of promise**, 14 Who is the pledge of our inheritance, unto the redemption of acquisition, unto the praise of his glory. (Ephesians 1:3-14)

Maran atha!

Angel

:coffee::coffee::coffee:

Hi, Gorgias!

…I thought three cups would do! :D:yup::nope::yup:

…actually what is being said is that it is impossible to pre-Confess a sin; that though God knows us (past, present, future) as NOW, it is man who must own up to his present condition by Confessing each sin as he commits to it (ie: I cannot Confess a bank robbery prior to committing it and expect to find myself in Heaven if I die in the process of the robbery–conversely the same goes for committing the sin an promptly owning up to it so that God would be “forced” to grant me Salvation, that’s hollowood gibberish spiritualism).

Maran atha!

Angel

…yeah, short-cuts are great!

Maran atha!

Angel

Confession IS permanent.

Every sin you confess is permanently gone. It is forgotten, and never to be seen again. You cannot be un-absolved and un-forgiven for a sin you confessed.

It is like taking a shower. Once you take a shower, that dirt is gone permanently. If you get dirty again, that’s new dirt, not the same dirt as before. Of course, you will sin again, and those are new sins, not the same sins that you confessed in the past.

What you have said is true, but there is a little catch to sin and absolution, a person must truly be sorry for the sin they committed, and be sorry for the ‘right’ reason…example, if I ask forgiveness for robbing a bank is it only because I fear suffering in hell (punishment) or is it because offending God is my main concern?

This is not correct. Fear of hell is sufficient reason to seek confession. It is hoped that the grace of confession will prompt the person to attain the “right” reasons, but it’s not essential for absolution.

Hi, Mike!

I concur!

…what hollowood has introduced into the world is a water-down version of what the Church Teaches… Christ did not Instituted the Sacrament of Confession to permit Believers to sin exponentially nor as shortcut to Salvation when a person finds him/herself facing life threatening situations… that’s why the death-Confessions depicted on film are only a mockery (cartoonish representations) of the Sacrament.

Jesus was adamant about our adherence to Him: “without Me, you are nothing…” (St. John 15:1-10) & “not all who call Me Lord will be Saved…” (St. Luke 7:21-23) The Sacraments must be experienced/exercised in that cohesion to Christ!

Maran atha!

Angel

I was thinking this very same thing.

Sin is odious to God and for that reason alone we should avoid it out of love for Him, but also keep in mind that each sin “slashes” our soul, it causes a wound. The gravity of the wound is dependant on the seriousness of the sin. Each wound makes us weaker in spiritual warfare. So one of the reasons we need the Sacrament of Confession is to heal that wound AND ALSO strengthen us against that particular sin so we are stronger in resisting it.

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