What is Repentance? Sermon for 3-12-12 “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.” Acts 2:36-39

You will rarely hear a message on repentance today like the one Peter preached at Pentecost. His sermon led thousands to freedom in Christ. We’ve traded repentance for self help, psychology & the pursuit of happiness.

In order for their to be True Repentance, there must be an acknowledgment of sin. Sin, another term that we are now afraid to preach about in America.

Sin is no longer challenged or preached against especially by televangelist. A carnal preacher will seldom challenge sin because GOD forbid, you may leave and he may not get your money. They may offend you and in this Politically Correct day and age, the last thing we want to do is offend somebody or loose a potential customer.

What is Repentance?

Repentance is sorrow, regret and remorse over sin. Regret that you went against and violated the God who created you, gave you life and died on the Cross for the very sins you now feel sorry for. The Hebrew word translated means “to turn back” or “turn around” The Prophets of the Old Testament used this word to encourage people to a radical, conscious rejection of past sin.Repentance is a change in one’s way of life. Repentance is running from your sin, doing a U-Turn, going in the opposite direction where you are so disgusted with yourself that you never want to commit that sin again. And if you Truly Repent: You never will.

“Repentance is more than just sorrow for the past; repentance is a change of mind and heart, a new life of denying self and serving the Savior as king in self’s place.” ~ J.I.P.

Only the sacrifice of Christ’s blood can forgive. But repentance is the only way to know true healing and rejoicing. There is no other way to enter the peace and rest of Christ except through the doors of repentance. Paul wrote to the Corinthians about the fruit that results from repentance:

Paul wrote to the Corinthians in 2 Corinthians 7: 9-11“Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that your sorrow led to repentance. For you were made sorry in a godly manner, that you might suffer loss from us in nothing. For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death. For observe this very thing, that you sorrowed in a godly manner: What diligence it produced in you, what clearing of yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what vehement desire, what zeal, what vindication! In all things you proved yourselves to be clear in this matter.”“ Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?” Romans 2:4

Repentance is the only way healing and strength can come to those who are caught up in sin.

In the book of Acts, which tells the story of the early church, the preaching of Repentance is mentioned nearly a dozen times.

“Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord,” Acts 3:19

“Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent,” Acts 17:30

“but declared first to those in Damascus and in Jerusalem, and throughout all the region of Judea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent, turn to God, and do works befitting repentance.” Acts 26:20

“testifying to Jews, and also to Greeks, repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.” Acts 20:21

Jesus speaks of Repentance over 22 times in the Gospels and He also mentions it several times in the Book of Revelation.

In Mark 2:17 Jesus said clearly He came to call sinners to repentance.“When Jesus heard it, He said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.” Mark 2:17

He also clearly calls us to preach repentance in Luke 24:46-47“Then He said to them, “Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise[h] from the dead the third day, and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.” Luke 24:46-47

Warning a sinner to run to the Cross or perish — is the greatest love message that can be offered to man. For it is repentance and trusting in the finished work of the Cross that leads to forgiveness.

What did John the Baptist preach? Matthew 3:1-11

“In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, 2 and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!” For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying:

“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:‘Prepare the way of the Lord;Make His paths straight.’”Now John himself was clothed in camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist; and his food was locusts and wild honey. Then Jerusalem, all Judea, and all the region around the Jordan went out to him and were baptized by him in the Jordan, confessing their sins.But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, “Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Therefore bear fruits worthy of repentance, and do not think to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I say to you that God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones. And even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore every tree which does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” Matthew 3:1-11

“John came baptizing in the wilderness and preaching a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.” Mark 1:4

“Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.” Mark 1:14-15

Jesus says Repent or Perish ~ Luke 13:1-5

“There were present at that season some who told Him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And Jesus answered and said to them, “Do you suppose that these Galileans were worse sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish. Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them, do you think that they were worse sinners than all other men who dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.” Luke 13:1-5

Rejoicing in Heaven “I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance.” Luke 15:7“Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” Luke 15:10

“But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:8-9

God wants us to Repent!

“Therefore you, O son of man, say to the house of Israel: ‘Thus you say, “If our transgressions and our sins lie upon us, and we pine away in them, how can we then live?”’ 11 Say to them: ‘As I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn, turn from your evil ways! For why should you die, O house of Israel?’ Ezekiel 33:10-11

“For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” 1 Timothy 2:3-4

Where are the God fearing men? Why do we allow this madness?Why do we seek to listen to and follow men and idols instead of God & Scripture? We act like dumb ignorant dogs, slaves to our masters, slaves to our sin who return to our own vomit over & over & over again!

You think you’re serving Him by saying, “I’ll repent some day.” That’s not a favor, that’s an insult. God, you’re good, just not good enough for me to give that up right now. These things are more precious to me than You. This sin is more beautiful than You, more valuable than you. It’s about me God! God, You’re good, just not good enough for me to repent and turn from my sin right NOW. My sin and satisfying my flesh are more important to me. I’ll repent one day when my sins ruin me, I’ll repent on my time. I’ll repent when I’m ready.” But what you’re saying to God is saying, “God, I’ll repent on my terms, not Yours. I’ll repent when I want to.”If you are doing this: You are insulting a Holy God!

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