Responsive Confession - The Ten Commandments

Below is a corporate prayer of confession we used yesterday for Ash Wednesday, working through the Ten Commandments as a means of examining our hearts for sin.

LEADER: You are the Lord our God, who has led us out of slavery and made us a people for Your name.

Father, you command us to have no other gods before you.

ALL: We worship created things. We worship worldly pleasures. We worship money and reputation and power. We worship ourselves.

LEADER: You command us not to make or worship graven images.

ALL: We make gods of things that are not gods. We remake You, the one true God, in our image. We do not worship you in the ways you require, and we use worship you do not require as a robe to cover our sins.

LEADER: You command us not to use your name for vanity.

ALL: We abuse your name in anger, selfishness, and pride. We attach your name to things that are not worthy of it. We use it for profit, for hypocrisy, and to justify ourselves in our righteousness rather than resting in Christ’s.

LEADER: You command us to remember the Sabbath and keep it holy.

ALL: Instead of resting, we worry. Instead of trusting, we strive. Instead of worshipping You, our hearts are distracted by worldly things.

LEADER: You command us to honor our parents and those in authority over us.

ALL: We do not honor them but despise them. We do not honor them but seek honor for ourselves. What authority you give us, we use for our selfish interests instead of honoring You as our true Father in heaven.

LEADER: You command us not to murder.

ALL: We despise those made in Your image with our hearts. We destroy those You love with our words. Through our inaction and our action, we participate in and support systems that bring death to souls and to bodies.

LEADER: You command us not to commit adultery.

ALL: We call love that which is not love and fail to love in truth. We lust in our hearts and sin with our bodies. We objectify, use, and demean ones precious in Your sight.

LEADER: You command us not to steal.

ALL: We rob our neighbors of resources and reputation. We seek gain even when it is unjust. We live lives of wasteful extravagance and consumption. We support systems that benefit us even when they harm others.

LEADER: You command us not to bear false witness against our neighbors.

ALL: We lie for our egos, for our advantage, and because we hate the truth. We gossip, slander, and defame. Our words join with the devil in accusing and condemning rather than with Your Spirit of grace.

LEADER: You command us not to covet.

ALL: We are constantly discontent with what we have. We measure ourselves against our neighbors, begrudging their successes and rejoicing in their failures. We are ungrateful.

LEADER: Lord, in Your mercy, forgive us our sins.