Monday, June 25, 2007

Repent or Perish

Luke 13:5 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.

There are many ideas today about God, but apart from God's word, you have no true understanding of who God is or how to have a relationship with Him. There are many ideas, but only one Bible way - the way of repentance and faith.

The different forms of the word "repentance" is mentioned just over one hundred times in the Bible. The basic definition is "to change one's mind," "to think differently," "to reconsider." When Jesus tells us in Luke 13:5 to "repent" or "perish," He is saying to change your way of thinking or reconsider the course you are on.

God gives you an example of true repentance in Luke 23:39-43; And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us. But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss. And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise. This passage tells of two thieves that hung on either side of Jesus to be crucified with Him for the deeds they had done.

The unrepentant thief said to Jesus, "If thou be Christ, save thyself and us." But the repentant thief replied, "Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss." Mark 15:32 and Matthew 27:44 reveals that both thieves mocked Jesus in the beginning, but the one changed his mind about this Man on the middle cross. In Luke 23:42, the repentant thief asks Jesus to "remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom." He looked at Jesus differently because he REPENTED, not to get off the cross but to have his sin forgiven. What had brought about this change? It was a heart attitude of FAITH AND REPENTANCE.

Friend, repentance is not just sorrow for sin or "turning over a new leaf." It is not turning from sin only. True REPENTENCE is seeing your sin as God sees your sin and trusting Him in confidence to do what He says He will do in His word. To desire God for purely selfish reasons is not to desire God at all. 2 Cor. 7:9-10 Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing. For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.

As you receive wages (or payment) for your work, the wages of your sin is death - eternal separation from God in Hell. Rom. 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Through repentance you change your mind about sin, salvation, and God.

Trust and believe the Bible is true and that Jesus is the only way for a person to receive forgiveness of sin and eternal life. John 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

Belief affects behavior. You respond to what you believe. If you believe that Jesus will do what He said, you will call on His name in faith and repentance. Acts 4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

The repentant thief saw himself needing a Saviour. How do you see yourself..... good enough, not as bad as others, pretty good??? You must change your mind about your sin and disobedience toward God. A change of heart will result in a changed life. John 6:37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. Jesus is ready and able to save. You must be like the repentant thief when he said, "remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom." 2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

Dear friend, do not take a chance with your eternal future. If you cannot give an honest Bible reason why God should let you into Heaven, then you are not saved. God's word is final and all are judged by it.

First, you must realize that you are a sinner, guilty and doomed before a holy God. Rom. 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Second, agree with God that you cannot save yourself from an eternal Hell. You need a Saviour. John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. This verse removes any confidence you may put in church attendance, church membership, or being baptized. It is all Christ and the shedding of His blood for your sin.

Third, call on Jesus now. Rom 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. Heb. 7:25 Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them. John 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

The Holy Spirit will give you the faith and power to believe His word as He convicts your heart about the truth of the Gospel and draws you to the Saviour.

The outcome of those who believe is found in John 3:15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

The outcome of those who DO NOT is found in Revelation 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.


Tract written by Cecil Helms

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Blogger Jeremy said...

Bro. Jim,

What a clear message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I really admire what you and your family do with blogging and such on the internet. It really inspired me to begin to blog(even though I do it rarely)!

As for campmeetings and such I really enjoy them too. I haven't been to many, but the ones I have been to I have thoroughly enjoyed. Speaking of special meetings, I saw on your photo blog that your family went to the Sword of the Lord Conference last year and I was wondering how it was? My pastor and I are really considering spending a few days at the conference next month and I am very excited about it! It would be my first time there!

I go to a very small fundamental baptist church in Hernshaw, about 5 min. out of the Kanawha City/Charleston area. We have about roughly around 30-40 people every Sunday. Pray that God would continue to bless our church!

I am looking forward to talking to you and such. Please keep in touch, my e-mail is if you ever need anything! Thanks for writing me!

10:52 PM  
Blogger Jim said...

Bro. Jeremy,

Thanks for your kind words about my families' different blog sites. Yes, we go to the annual Sword Conference... maybe we can meet each other in a few weeks!!!

My wife and I are originally from St. Albans, WV and all our family is still up in WV in the surrounding areas.

I'll be praying for you as you serve in your local church ministry.

11:05 PM  

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