The Power of Repentance
Scripture Reading: Acts 2: 40 (NIV)
With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.”
Message: The Power of Repentance (#7 Power of the Holy Spirit sermon series)
Save yourselves from this corrupt generation
“Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.”
These are the last words of Paul’s famous sermon
The sermon that brought about masses of people turning to God and accepting Jesus as their Saviour
The sermon that started the movement in peoples hearts that lead to the rise of the church
God created the church though people committing to step away from a “corrupt generation”
People realizing that they are on the wrong path in life and deciding to turn away from that path
That is powerful!
We often miss this element of the rise of the church
Touching their lives, the Holy Spirit stirred up repentance among the early believers…
We could argue that repentance was the start of many of the wonderful things that they experienced
The church stepped away from the popular direction of society
Repentance, not popular today
Now, repentance is not popular in this day and age we live in
In our reformed faith we moved away from the Roman Catholic sacrament of penance - remember the abuse of taking advantage of people’s repentance in the history leading up to reformation?
But for a different reason repentance is not popular today
We live in an era of freedom… freedom of speech… freedom of belief… freedom of choice
I guess people these days don’t like to be told to repent
Just think about it for a moment…
If you are really honest, and think you would feel if I were to walk up to you and say that what you are doing is wrong and you need to repent…
Chances are that you would not be very happy with me
But what is our reaction to the Word of God and teachings of Jesus?
Let me ask you this: When last did you make an adjustment to the way you life in response to the Word of God?
Or do you think you have it all figured out?
Pride preventing Repentance
You see, I think the corruptness of our generation lies in pride
And I am not referring to rainbow-flag-pride
Our freedom of opinion and speech, and our right to choose what we want to believe, created a very unhealthy sense of pride in us
A sense of pride that is preventing us to grow
Pride that is standing in the way of us realizing that we need to make changes in our lives
Pride that is preventing us from understanding that work of the Holy Spirit in our lives is not over, but ongoing
Pride that is preventing us to repent from our sinful ways
Yes, sin is still prevalent among us - there is plenty for us to repent from
The problem is that we are just to proud to do so
The need for Repentance
I believe that we desperately need to repent from our pride!
Pride is preventing us from growing
It is simply impossible to grow if you think that you have heard it all and that you have it all figured out
Growth starts with repentance - the first congregation is a stellar example of the power of repentance
They realized that they were on a wrong path and allowed the Holy Spirit to direct their live through the teachings they received
They were constantly self-examining, reflecting and repenting in order to grow
Is this the reason that church is struggling to grow these days?
Have we come to a stage that we don’t allow ourselves to be taught anymore?
Let alone repent from our corrupt ways?
The Truth shall set you free
One day Jesus was teaching a group of Jews that was really fascinated with his teachings
He told that if they really take his teachings to heart… “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8: 32)
It is often said these days that we all have our own truth… this is your truth and that is my truth
We live in a era where truth is relative
Truth became a concept of my freedom of choice to believe whatever I fancy
That is exactly why repentance is not popular today - we don’t subscribe to the Truth anymore… we all just have our own truths as we go along…
Truth is not a concept - Truth is a Person!
Jesus said: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
Jesus is the Truth - He is the Truth that will set you free!
You will know Him, you will know truth, when you take his teachings to heart!
The power of Repentance
I always remember the words of my favourite professor at university - he said: “when you stop growing, you die”
Repentance is the key to growth
Repentance is the power that sparks spiritual growth
May you let go of your pride today!
May you stop thinking that you have it all figured out
May you take the teachings of Jesus to heart
And may you know the Truth, the real Truth - Jesus Christ, Son of God
That is the Power of Repentance!
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