There is a lovely storyline throughout the Bible. It says in the beginning of time, God, like a loving Father, created all things including mankind. He wanted to have relationship with us. He wanted a family.
Unfortunately, man and woman messed it up. They were deceived by the serpent (Satan) into believing that God withheld from them when in truth, He gave them everything- dominion to rule and care for them in every way.
And ever since then, God has been implementing a plan to bring us back into right relationship with Him that He had always prepared. And He still wants His family...but on His terms.
Isaiah 55:6-7 - “Seek the Lord while He may be found, Call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the unrighteous man his thoughts; Let him return to the Lord and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.”
God wants people to return to Him. He will have compassion on them, forgive them and bring them into the fold.
Unfortunately, the serpent still prevails today, skewing the perspective which needs to line up with God’s. Mankind insists on believing the lie that God is not good. But He is very good and wants glory.
What does it look like to give God glory? We glorify God when people around us hear what we believe, see how we make decisions and our response to difficulties. The hope is that they may become curious and want to worship God because it’s His power that helps us live our lives in a supernatural way.
When we don’t give God glory, evil and a sinful world prevails.
In Revelation 9:20-21, it says that some of “mankind…did not repent of the works of their hands nor gave up worshiping demons and idols…nor did they repent of their murders, sorceries, sexual immorality or their thefts.”
God’s Word to all mankind is not only to extend His grace, nor is it simply to live uprightly, nor is it that He is a fairy godmother that makes all our wishes come true. God’s word has been and continues to be, “Repent.”
Isaiah 30:15 - For thus says the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel: “In returning and rest you shall be saved; In quietness and confidence shall be your strength.” But you would not.
Ezekiel 18:30-32 - “Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, each according to his conduct,” declares the Lord God. “Repent and turn away from all your transgressions, so that iniquity may not become a stumbling block to you. Cast away from you all your transgressions which you have committed and make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! For why will you die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone who dies,” declares the Lord God. “Therefore, repent and live.”
Matthew 3:2 - John the Baptist preached, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!”
Mark 1:15 - Jesus said “Repent and believe in the gospel.”
Acts 2:38 - Peter said “Repent and be baptized.”
Acts 17:30 - Paul said God “commands all people everywhere to repent.”
But what is repentance?
Here’s what it’s not: regret, shame, feeling sorry…
Repentance involves two things: a change of mind and a change of behavior. Repentance means you change your mind. That’s what the Greek word metanoia means– a changed (meta) mind (noia).
Romans 12:2 says, - “...do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”
Here’s the thing: when dealing with spiritual matters of the heart, God’s the only one who can really change your mind. We are simply not predisposed to say “I was wrong! I was wrong about God and about myself. My whole way of looking at the world has been in error. I want to change.” That’s repentance. And it’s amazing because the Holy Spirit is the one who leads us into repentance through truth in the gospel message.
You’ll hear me say often, “Change your priorities, change your life.”
When you come to Christ and ask Him for forgiveness of sin, repent of it and change your thinking and behavior, your life is turned around by the power of God, through the leading of the Holy Spirit.
If you do not know Him in this way, message me. I’d love to pray with you to come to know Him as Savior and Lord.