Confession has two parts. First, that we confess our sins, and second,
that we receive absolution, that is, forgiveness, from the pastor as from
God Himself, not doubting, but firmly believing that by it our sins are
forgiven before God in heaven.
What sins should we confess?
Before God we should plead guilty of all sins, even those we are not aware
of, as we do in the Lord's Prayer; but before the pastor we should confess
only those sins which we know and feel in our hearts.
Which are these?
Consider your place in life according to the Ten Commandments: Are you
a father, mother, son, daughter, husband, wife, or worker? Have you been
disobedient, unfaithful, or lazy? Have you been hot-tempered, rude, or
quarrelsome? Have you hurt someone by your words or deeds? Have you stolen,
been negligent, wasted anything, or done any harm?