Summary: Repentance is not turning over a new leaf. It’s a new way of life. It’s returning to a right relationship with the Father by turning away from sin and turning to the Son.
The Doctrine of Christ (part 1)
“REPENTANCE FROM DEAD WORKS: Repent,For the Kingdom of Heaven is at Hand”
SERIES TEXT - Hebrews 6:1-2
Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,
Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.
INTRO - Doctrine is to the Christian life what a foundation is to a house. Many Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormon’s and members of the Nation of Islam are people who grew up in church. They knew church doctrine but did not know Christian doctrine. They had not been indoctrinated. In other words, Christian doctrine was not in them. James 1:21 says it is the engrafted word that is able to save your soul. The word doesn’t work on us unless it is in us. The word must be embedded, engrained, engraved, and engrafted. We must be indoctrinated with the doctrine of Christ. Before we get into the what of the doctrine, it is important that we clarify the who of the Christ.
Christ means Messiah, Anointed One, the Son of God Proverbs 30:4 says:
Who hath ascended up into heaven, or descended? who hath gathered the wind in his fists? who hath bound the waters in a garment? who hath established all the ends of the earth? what is his name, and what is his son’s name, if thou canst tell?
We can’t know Who God is if we don’t know who His Son is. His name is Jesus! John 1: says in the beginning Jesus was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. And there was nothing that was made that was not made by Him. And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us and we beheld the glory of the only begotten of the Father. Jesus! He was born of a virgin in Bethlehem to fulfill prophecy. He lived a sinless life because He was the sinless Lamb of God with spot or blemish. He died on a cross to save us when we were lost. He rose the third day, ascended into the third heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father making intercession for you and for me. Jesus! This same Jesus is coming back to crack the eastern sky with a shout, with the trump of God and the voice of the archangel so we can go up the same way He went up. Jesus is coming as a conquering king. He’s the King of kings and he will reign on the earth for a thousand years and after heaven and earth pass away, He’ll reign in a new heaven and new earth for ever. Jesus is the Christ and it’s His doctrine because it’s His church. In Math 16, Jesus said “Upon this rock will I build My church.” We are His church so we ought to know His doctrine. Hebrews 5:12 says that we should not only know the first principles of the doctrine of Christ, we should be teaching it. So, let’s learn it again! The first of the six principles of the doctrine of Christ comes from the first message Jesus preached. After John, the Baptist, was beheaded Jesus began to preach “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand”(Matt 4:17). The first principle is Repentance from Dead Works.
TEXT – Matthew 4:17 From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand
1. It’s A Change In Direction - The word Repentance comes from the Greek word Metanoia, which means a change of mind. However the English gives us real picture of repentance. “Re” means again and “pent” means up. Repentance is not just a change of mind. It’s change of mind because of a change of direction. This is the revelation of the difference between turning over a new leaf and starting a new life. The reason people say “If I stop smoking, I’ll gain weight” is because they turn from smoking to snacking. That’s turning over a new leaf. But repentance is not so much what you turn from to Who you turn to. When John the Baptist and Jesus preached “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.“ They were saying, “God is here to give you a helping hand.“ You can be free of everything if you’ll give it all over to Jesus. It’s not just changing my behavior, it’s changing my belief. It’s not away from something. It’s turning to Someone. Re-pent means to turn up again. Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of my faith (Hebrews 12:2). Look up! You’ve been looking down and looking back for too long! Your strength comes from Who you look to! Repentance is the key to deliverance! You don’t have to live life afraid of going back to what you used to do if you live life following Jesus. It’s not a new leaf. It’s a new lifestyle. I need to repent and return to a right relationship with the Father through the Son so He can renew my recreated spirit man through the process called Redemption. Jesus has already paid the price for what you’ve done because you couldn’t. He bought you back as an investment because His glory is in you! Christ in you, the hope of glory! I need to turn to the One who made me. I need to turn to the One who knew me before I was in my mother’s womb so He knows my purpose and my potential. I need to turn to the One loves me twice as much (Story of the boy and the toy boat).