Summary: An examination of the difference between repentance & regret, and how God responds to each.
HAVE YOU GOT WHAT IT TAKES?
> Luke 13:1-5 There were present at that season some that told him of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.
The statement in these verses I would like you to notice is the promise, “Except you repent, you will perish.” That’s a pretty strong statement Jesus makes here. You must repent in order to be saved, and if you don’t repent, you won’t be saved.
With Jesus making a promise like that, I think it is vitally important that we understand what Jesus means when He tells us to repent.
If you remember, we have been studying the book of Judges. When we last left, God had just punished the man who killed Gideon’s sons, and also the people who supported him. You see, you can’t mess with God’s people and get away with it.
In Judges chapter 10, we find in the beginning verses of the chapter that after that punishing of God, that there were 2 kings that ruled in Israel. The Bible doesn’t tell us a lot about them. Evidently they weren’t all that great, or we probably would have heard; and they weren’t absolutely terrible, or God probably would have told us about that as well.
After those 2 kings died, the Israelites again turned their backs on God. They didn’t just forget about God, they plunged whole-heartedly into following other gods. Verse 6 lists 7 different gods they served. They ran to the world. They rolled in the muck.
Again, God got sick of it, and so He sent 2 nations to punish them. The Philistines attacked them from the west, and the Ammonites attacked them from the east. After 18 years, the Ammonites even crossed the Jordan River and attacked the heartland. The people were in misery. Notice if you will, the people’s response.
I. WHEN ALL WE DO IS REGRET – v10
Regret touches the emotions, but it may go no deeper than that. Regret is remorse over the consequences of an act, but that is not repentance.
My friends, Matthew 27:3 tells us Judas regretted what he had done, and then he went out and hung himself.
Each time God sent a plague on Egypt, Pharaoh regretted what was happening, but as soon as the plague passed, he changed his mind.
II. GOD’S RESPONSE TO REGRET – vv 13-14
I will deliver you no more. My friend, God is not some fairy god mother to be called just when there is a problem going on. God is God, and He will either be God of all, or He will not be your God at all.
III. WHEN WE TRULY REPENT –
1. v15 –Confession, we have sinned.
2. v15 –Submission, do to us whatever seems right to You.
3. v16 – Destruction – got rid of their gods.
4. v16 – Construction – and served the Lord. They lived constructive lives. No longer just lip service. They were serving and obeying God.