LUKE 3:18: “John used many such warnings as he announced the Good News to the people.” NLT
“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.” II Corinthians 7:9-10
The “Doorknob” is Repentance!
The First Step toward opening this door (God’s invitation to salvation; Revelation 3:20) is to Repent. We must each personally repent of our sins.
What does it mean to repent?
It’s not simply saying, “Oh, God, I’m sorry.” Most of the time, in all honesty, we are only sorry that we got caught, or we regret the consequences that have resulted from our sin.
True repentance is when we are sincerely sorry that we have violated what God has told us. Repentance is acknowledging the fact that God alone is righteous, and that we are sinners in need of a Savior. This inward revelation brings us to the realization that – We need God!
Now that is repentance!
Repentance is turning from our old way of life, acknowledging the fact that –
- I cannot be my own boss.
- I cannot be the lord of my life anymore!
- My life is a mess!
- God, I need You! I need You in my life!
When I was 17 years old, I moved out on my own into my first apartment in Fullerton, California. I thought I had it all together. I had a good job and a fast car. All of my life was before me. However, I was miserable and confused inside. I fought depression and wondered if life was even worth living. Miserable, defeated, and lonely, one night I knelt down on the floor in my apartment and cried –
“God, I need You! If you don’t come into my life right now, if you don’t change me, I’m done with this life!”
And there, humbly on my knees, something wonderful happened – God came into my life in a powerful way!
Mark 1:14-15 says,
“Now after that 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.”
ASK YOURSELF THESE QUESTIONS
- What does godly sorrow lead me to?
- Is repentance more than merely saying “I’m sorry?”
- What am I doing when I repent?
- What am I acknowledging when I repent?
- Am I ready to repent and believe the Gospel?”
“Good News!” The Gospel of Jesus Christ…From Genesis to Revelation
Kirk L. Zehnder
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