You are correct in saying that Christ died for all our sins…past, present, and future.  Because of that, we have complete confidence in the finished work of Christ and realize that we will NEVER face the judgment of God for our sins.  Romans 8:1 assures us that, “Therefore there is now NO CONDEMNATION for those who are in Christ Jesus.” (NASB).  Realistically, if Christ truly died and paid for ALL our sins, then God CANNOT condemn us.  He has already condemned, or judged, His Son on the cross as He hung there to pay our sin debt. 

1 John 1:7 says to all believers, “…the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from ALL SIN.”  When the Lord Jesus died on the cross for us, ALL our sins were future, so we can rest assured that ALL our sins, past, present and future have been forgiven.  Blessed truth!

Yet, we read in 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”  Here we learn the necessity of the confession of our sins to the Lord.  When we repent and confess our sins the Lord “He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from ALL unrighteousness.”

How do we understand these two seemingly differing statements?  It is quite simple.  In relation to our standing before God, those who have trusted Christ as their savior have had ALL their sins forgiven.  Even more than that we have been, “…made the righteousness of God in him.” (2 Corinthians 5:21).  We are beyond the judgment of God because Christ was judged in our stead. 

However, in relation to our state before God, we need to confess our sins to Him constantly.  It is so important to the believer that we confess our sins so that we might maintain a good relationship with the Lord.  It has nothing to do with our salvation, but everything to do with the enjoyment of our salvation.  Unconfessed sin will cause our hearts to harden.  It will cause us to drift away from the Lord.  It will rob us of the joy of our salvation.  King David, in confessing his sin of adultery to the Lord said in Psalm 51:12, “Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.”  His sin had not taken away his salvation but it did take away the joy of his salvation. 

So, do we need to always confess our sins to the Lord?  YES!  How often should we confess our sins?  As soon as we realize we have sinned, we should stop what we are doing and confess that sin to the Lord.  To delay our confession could result in us forgetting our sin and not confessing it to Him.  We need that constant practical forgiveness and cleansing that comes from confession, so let us be sure to confess our sins quickly so that we do not lose the joy of our salvation.  (405.6)