Confession: Philippians 3: 4-14

Here’s a prayer of confession inspired by Philippians 3: 4-14, the suggested epistle reading for Lent 5, Year C.  It was written by Moira Laidlaw.


Prayer of Confession

(inspired by Philippians 3: 4-14) 

God of all righteousness, we know how the apostle Paul counted himself as a righteous person when zealously carrying out the law as a Pharisee. He considered himself to be blameless, but counted all that as loss when he came to know Jesus as Lord and Saviour. From that time on, righteousness took on a new meaning.  Paul knew that he no longer needed to perform exemplary deeds in order to earn your love. All he had to do was to accept your gracious and unconditional love. 

Forgive us, O God, when we believe that righteous behaviour is all that is needed to secure your love. 

(silent reflection)

We know that we can neither earn nor deserve all that you have done for us. 

Help us to surrender our wordly attitudes and values so that, like Paul, we can celebrate anew lives centred in Jesus Christ. 

(silent reflection)

Paul acknowledges a desire to participate in the death and resurrection of Christ so that he can die and rise also. He urges others to do likewise.

Forgive us, O God, when we lose sight of the goal of our lives as Christians—that of following Jesus; 
even when that means, and perhaps, especially when that means taking up our cross, and sharing in the suffering and struggle that Jesus shares with us.

(silent reflection)

Merciful God, in the agony of the crucifixion, we see the lengths you were prepared to go, to ‘do great things for us’. 

Whatever gains we may have experienced in our lives, like Paul may we regard them as loss, compared to the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus as our Lord. This we pray in his name. Amen

If the Scripture verse “The Lord has done great things for us” was sung earlier - invite people to sing it again softly while seated.

Words of Assurance (Philippians 3:9)

The Lord has indeed done great things for us,

as ‘our righteousness is one that comes through faith in Christ,

the righteousness from God based on faith.’ (Phil.3: 9)

The good news therefore is this:

In Jesus Christ we are accepted, 
we are loved, we are forgiven. 
Thanks be to God! 


~ written by Moira Laidlaw, and posted on Liturgies Online.