I Have Sinned

i have sinned The phrase I have sinned is found throughout the Bible. It ranges from Pharaoh to Judas Iscariot. Strangely, not all who acknowledge their sin in that way repented to find forgiveness.  There is a definite difference between saying I have sinned and actually repenting. Here are six times where the phrase I have sinned is found:


Then Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron. “This time I have sinned,” he said to them. “The LORD is in the right, and I and my people are in the wrong.” (Exo 9:27)

Pharaoh quickly summoned Moses and Aaron and said, “I have sinned against the LORD your God and against you.” (Exo 10:16)


Balaam said to the angel of the LORD, “I have sinned. I did not realize you were standing in the road to oppose me. Now if you are displeased, I will go back.” (Num 22:34)

Balaam is the man who prayed to die the death of the righteous, yet didn’t!

King Saul

Then Saul said to Samuel, “I have sinned. I violated the Lord’s command and your instructions. I was afraid of the people and so I gave in to them.”  (1 Sam 15:24)

Saul replied, “I have sinned. But please honor me before the elders of my people and before Israel; come back with me, so that I may worship the LORD your God.”  (1 Sam 15:30)

Then Saul said, “I have sinned. Come back, David my son. Because you considered my life precious today, I will not try to harm you again. Surely I have acted like a fool and have erred greatly.”  (1 Sam 26:21)

There is no evidence that King Saul ever got his salvation back. His backsliding began by being a man pleaser, which escalated downward. Even though Saul knew he would die the next day (1 Sam. 28:19), he didn’t repent. He sadly died in his sins and was another tragedy of a wasted life.

King David

Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the LORD.” Nathan replied, “The LORD has taken away your sin. You are not going to die.” (2 Sam 12:13)

Apparently, King David had repented before Nathan confronted him, for the Lord had taken away his sin. King David should have been stoned to death for his adultery, but wasn’t! To teach King David didn’t lose his salvation is to teach a license to sin.

David was conscience-stricken after he had counted the fighting men, and he said to the LORD, “I have sinned greatly in what I have done. Now, O LORD, I beg you, take away the guilt of your servant. I have done a very foolish thing.”  (2 Sam 24:10)

Then David said to God, “I have sinned greatly by doing this. Now, I beg you, take away the guilt of your servant. I have done a very foolish thing.”  (1 Chr 21:8)

I said, “O LORD, have mercy on me; heal me, for I have sinned against you.”  (Psa 41:4)

To this day, people still mention King David and his sins of adultery and murder in their ungodly effort to justify their own sinful behavior. People need to know that when King David sinned, he lost his salvation. He later got it back, unlike others, through repentance.

Judas Iscariot

“I have sinned,” he said, “for I have betrayed innocent blood.” “What is that to us?” they replied. “That’s your responsibility.”  (Mat 27:4)

The intensity of our spiritual warfare is evident with Judas Iscariot, who was once promised a throne in heaven (Mt. 19:28), as Jesus’ disciple (Mt. 10:1-4). He once had salvation, but went to hell after his death. There was no eternal security for him, just like there is none for us!

Prodigal Son

I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. (Luke 15:18)

The son said to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.” (Luke 15:21)

Jesus’ encouraging teaching for backsliders who repent, like the Prodigal, are wonderful. Jesus taught the Prodigal Son lost his salvation, then got saved again, upon repentance (Lk. 15:24).

You Need More Than Just Saying I Have Sinned

Sometimes a person needs to become aware of his sins, before he says I have sinned, but that isn’t good enough in itself — there is more. One must truly repent, turning from his idols to serve God, as shown by the Prodigal and also in 1 Thess. 1:9. Dear reader, where are you with God TODAY? If you aren’t living holy now, you aren’t a Christian now.  Sin is still the issue with God, even after the cross (1 Cor. 6:9,10; Gal. 5:19-21; Eph. 5:5-7; Rev. 21:8)! Backslider, DO NOT BE DECEIVED!

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