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The call to repentance is important and must not be neglected. It is entirely accurate to say that it is the first word of the gospel. I shall attempt to explain what repentance means dive deep into the scriptures and look at some characters who used the word repent at the beginning of their ministries.
Is repentance something we must do before we can come to God? Yes and No. repentance does not describe something we must do before we come to God; it describes what coming to God is like. If you are in Otsenkorang in the Agona Swedru Area and I tell you to come to Nsonan, I don’t need to say “Leave Otsenkorang and come to Nsoana.” To come to Nsonan is to leave Otsenkorang and if I haven’t left Otsenkorang, I certainly haven’t come to Nsonan. We can’t come to the kingdom of heaven unless we leave our sin and the self-life.
So, repentance is leaving your old self (the world) for a new life in Jesus Christ.
17 From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven [a]is at hand.” Matthew 4:17 NKJV
14 Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel [a]of the kingdom of God, 15 and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God [b]is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.” Mark 1:14-15 NKJV
So, from these two scriptures, we see how Jesus’ ministry began. Jesus being God, knew how repentance was key in the lives of the Gentiles and the Jews. The sad news is that the Jews thought that they didn’t need any repentance rather the Gentiles. That is why John the Baptist called the Pharisees and Sadducees “Brood of vipers”. These two groups represented the leadership of Judaism. According to these two groups, John’s baptism in water was meant for only Gentiles and not them. Because they wanted to show the world how ready they were for the Messiah, though they had not truly repented. John reminded them that real repentance will show itself in life. It must be a matter of living repentance, not just talking repentance. We must live a life worthy of the calling that we have received from our Lord Jesus. Most Christians do not live up to the standard of the kingdom. We must live the gospel and share it with others.
38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the [a]remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit”. Acts 2: 38 NKJV
The church was formed out of the call to repentance. After the baptism of the Holy Spirit, the early fathers stood with boldness and preached on repentance. Without the help of the Holy Spirit, we cannot speak or preach on repentance. One of the works of the Holy Spirit is to cause the believer to witness the lost souls.
Preparation to make before speaking on repentance to others.
We must endeavor to share the gospel wherever we find ourselves.
We must recall that offering words of repentance is a holy obligation that can profoundly influence people’s spiritual development. With humility, compassion, and a genuine desire to assist others in returning to their faith and their relationship with God, approach this responsibility.
We must live a life of integrity and stay holy for the Lord.
P/Ovr. Solomon Boadi
Agona Swedru Area
Written by: Pensa Int'l