By: Scott Shifferd, Jr.
God calls all people everywhere to repent (Ac 17.30). Peter wrote in 2 Peter 3.9, “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.” Furthermore, Jesus said in Luke 24.46-47, “Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day, that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.’” This is the Gospel to the Nations that is described, “Then God has also granted to the Nations repentance to life” (Ac 11.18). Jesus said, “I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance” (Lk 5.32). Were we called to repent?
Many of us may have a misconception of what repentance is. Sorrow is not repentance (2 Cor. 7:9-10). Changing behavior without changing the mind is not repentance. Changing the mind without changing behavior is not repentance. The Gospel declared throughout the nations is that, “they should repent and convert to God doing works compatible with repentance” (Ac 26.20, cf. He 6.1). In Greek, repent is made of 2 words “change” and “mind”. Repentance is modifying our understanding, reforming our intellect, and altering our thinking, so that our behavior changes. A person repents when one’s mind is changed through conversion unto good works. A true believer will show works of repentance (Mk 1.15, Jn 3.20-21, Ac 8.22).
Jesus said, “Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place --- unless you repent” (Re 2.5). Jesus also said in Luke 13:3, 5, “Repent or likewise be ruined” like any other person, who dies without God. Otherwise, repent and cause rejoicing in Heaven. Jesus said, “I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance. […] Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents” (Lk 15.7, 10). “Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord,” (Ac 3.19). “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins;” (Ac 2.38).
By: Scott Shifferd, Jr
Last Lord's Day, the subject was addressed in study about what the world needs to know about Christ. Are we ready to spread the Gospel? Do we have tracts at hand and verses in mind? Are we prepared at all times to present the Truth?
Jesus did say, “He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad” (Mt 12.30). When should we do this - at work, in the park, or only in the church building? These are certainly matters that we should consider. Are we gathering with Christ or are we scattering against Him?
Here were some points to consider to increase our evangelism:
Remember essential teachings and scriptures that we need to use to teach others. These include teaching about:
Here are a few essential characteristics of the church of Christ:
By Scott Shifferd, Jr
“Why do you sleep? Rise and pray, lest you enter into temptation”, said Jesus as He returned from prayer in the garden (Lk 22.46). Jesus told His disciples to pray that they not enter into temptation, but now, an armed crowd came to arrest Jesus. When is an inopportune to time to listen to Jesus?
Many people do not listen Jesus, and they think they are heaven bound. They reason that good people go to Heaven. If good people go to Heaven, then who needs Jesus and who needs God? Regarding being good, Jesus said, "No one is good but One, that is, God" (Mk 10.18). He also said, “I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance” (Mk 2.17b). If we have not been sinners, then we do not need Jesus. Jesus was asked, "Lord, are there few who are saved?", and to which Jesus replied, "Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able” (Lk 13.23-24).
If we need to repent, then we need Jesus. Do our consciences tell us that we need to be relieved of guilt and regret? Jesus said,
“What comes out of a person, that defiles a person. For from within, out of the heart of people, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, extramarital sex, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, an evil eye, cursing, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within and defile a man” (Mark 7:20-23).
Are we innocent or guilty? If we not guilty of some sin and evil, then we do not need Jesus. Jesus said, “The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and those who practice lawlessness, and will cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth” (Mt 13.41-42). Jesus was clear about those, who practice lawlessness (Mt 7.21-23). Jesus said, “But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him!” (Lk 12.5, cf. Mk 9.43).
Christ said, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin” (Jn 8.34). He also said, “And you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free” (Jn 8.32).