Summary: What is Repentance? How should we respond to Jesus?

Responding to Jesus- the vital place of Repentance (Heb 6, but also first few chapters)

Adrian Warnock

Jubilee Church Lee Valley

What is preaching

* Effective Christian preachers have a compelling vision of Jesus Christ which they communicate forcefully to their listeners to lead them to view their circumstances differently and to respond with strengthened faith and commitment. [1]

* Turns sinners into saints by showing them Jesus

* Tension between displaying Jesus and calling to a commitment in this example of a sermon.

[1]Zuck, R. B. (1996, c1994). A biblical theology of the New Testament (Page 370). Chicago: Moody Press.

The Jesus warning sandwich

* Jesus is better than

* the prophets (Heb 1)

* the angels (Heb 1, 2)

* Moses (Heb 3)

* Joshua (Heb 4)

* The Levitical priests (Heb 5,7-10)

A superior Jesus demands a superior response!

* Jesus- the God-man who died and now reigns- a truly compelling picture.

* The ‘foundations’ of Heb 6 are essentially how we view our circumstances differently and respond with strengthened faith and commitment.

* Repentance is central to the message of the Old Testament, John the Baptist, Jesus, the book of Acts, and the rest of the New Testament.

* Is it central today

Bible sermons caused a response

* Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (Ac 2:38-39)

* Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord (Ac 3:19)

* Many who heard the message believed (Acts 4:4)

* With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord (Ac 4:33)

* Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit. (Ac 8:17).

What is repentance

* Repentance is not ‘praying a prayer’ Ac 26:20- ‘First to those in Damascus, then to those in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and to the Gentiles also, I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds’

* ‘Repentance is a conscious reversal of a person’s belief about Jesus which leads to an outward demonstration of that change. Repentance, then, is an act of the will involving a change in thinking (not feelings) with a resulting change in conduct.’

(Discipleship Journal : Issue 40. 1999 The Navigators/NavPress, paraphrased)

* BUT- Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death (2 Co 7:10)

* It is neither sorrow without change, nor change without sorrow, but it is such a deep feeling of sorrow as gives rise to a determination to change Girdlestone, R. B. (1998). Synonyms of the Old Testament : Their bearing on Christian doctrine. (Page 89).

* Hebrew-Turning back, retracing one’s steps in order to return to the right way

* Greek ‘metanoein’ changing one’s mind, coming to a new way of thinking

What do we turn from and to

* How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God! (Heb 9:14).

* From Sin- ‘I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.’ (Lk 5:32)

* From attempts to earn Gods favour

* From attitudes

* To Jesus and a covenant relationship

* To acting to please because we know he is pleased with us.

When do we repent

* Once for all as our conversion (Is this why Heb 6 speaks of not being brought back to repentance?)

* Like marriage, it represents a final decision that has implications for the rest of our lives

* It is intended to continue if real throughout our lives- there is no clear biblical grounds for security of salvation if you are not living in repentance.

* We have come to share in Christ if we hold firmly till the end the confidence we had at first. (Heb 3:14)

How do we repent

* In thought- a change of thinking

* In word- confession of sin

* In deed- repentance means you don’t get to do it again!

* To one another ‘Sorry I was wrong with God’s help I won’t do that again!’

1 Jn 3:2-10

* Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure…you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin. No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him. Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. He who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. He who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work. No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been born of God. This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother. (1 Jn 3:2-10)

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