In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea and saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. Matt 3:1,2
- This kingdom of heaven is not of this world, this is a spiritual kingdom: John preached over 2000 years ago the kingdom is at hand; then he said it is at the door, to us it is come by Jesus Christ.
- John the Baptist was the person of whom the prophet Isaiah spoke. He was the forerunner of Jesus Christ, preparing the way for the gospel to settle in the hearts of men and women.
The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain: Isa 40:3,4
- The idea is that every obstruction, wall, river, mountain, shall be removed as to reveal to the whole world the salvation of God manifested in Jesus Christ, who would be the redemptive plan for every living soul. The life of despair, gloom and despondency would now be a choice instead of having to live year by year facing the same sins.
Mat 3:3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
Mat 3:4 And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey.
Mat 3:5 Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan,
Mat 3:6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.
- John preached for them to repent: this was the prerequisite to the Holy Ghost (Holy Spirit) that would come on all the believers of the gospel who would obey. John’s command to repent could, therefore, be rendered, “be converted.”
Mat 3:7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
Mat 3:8 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
- You have shown no evidence of it,” he was saying, “but now you have an opportunity to truly repent if you mean it. Show me that you have turned from your wicked hypocrisy to genuine godliness, and I will be glad to baptize you.”
- A call to repentance and baptism, an inner change of mind and heart, along with an outward act that symbolized that change—and, even more importantly, a manner of living that demonstrates the change.
Mat 3:9 And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
Mat 3:10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
- The axe is picked up and it is used to attack those things in our lives, such as the sins that we need God to help us with. Cutting the roots completely off all the worldly things. The lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye and the pride of life: is not of God but is of the world. We need to destroy those sins that keep us from hacking away the tree in our lives; the tree that brings forth evil fruit must go to have fellowship with God.
Mat 3:11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
- Repentance is vital in preparing ourselves for the Holy Ghost, the spirit of Almighty God to come into our lives. Without repentance it is impossible to prepare yourself for salvation. It is like you are trying to remove all the sand on the sea shore with a spoon and a bucket. Failure to repent would result in severe judgment. Repentance was exactly the same message with which Jesus began His preaching and the apostles began theirs. That includes baptism with water.
3 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.
- The Bible clearly tells us that we are to repent.
10 Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.
- Joy exists in the presence of the angels of God, who have a deep interest in the redemption that produces God’s joy over one sinner who repents. The joy here is God’s joy, the joy that fills heaven, and which the angels and the redeemed share together.
2Pe 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.
- God has no delight in the death of sinners. A merciful God does not take pleasure in it. God in his long-suffering of those who He has chosen to save through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth by His goodness and forbearance sends a call to repentance to all those who will exercise their faith and repent. God gives everyone a space of time to repent.
Luke 24:47 (KJV)
47 And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
- Forgiveness of sins is available only to those who repent. Repentance is the foundational biblical, spiritual act that moves the heart in the direction of salvation. It is turning from sin’s presence, power, dominance, and consequences to righteousness. Repentance involves a desire to leave sin behind and pursue righteousness.
- Jesus said that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name beginning at Jerusalem.
Acts 2:37-38 (KJV)
37 Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
- These men were convicted in their heart and wanted to repent for doing bad.
- Repentance involves a desire to leave sin behind and pursue righteousness. It is not simply feeling bad about one’s circumstances, or condition, or the consequences that resulted from one’s sins, but mourning over the reality of sin.
Act 3:19 Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;
- The apostles understood the importance of forgiveness and proclaimed it. On the day of Pentecost, Peter said to the crowd, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins” (Acts 2:38). Later he declared to the Sanhedrin, “The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom you had put to death by hanging Him on a cross. He is the one whom God exalted to His right hand as a Prince and a Savior, to grant repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins” (Acts 5:30). He said to those gathered in Cornelius’s house, “Of [Jesus] all the prophets bear witness that through His name everyone who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins” (Acts 10:43). Paul told those gathered in the synagogue at Pisidian Antioch, “Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through [Christ] forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you” (13:38).
Heb 12:1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
2Co 7:1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
Rom 1:29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,
Rom 1:30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
Rom 1:31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:
Rom 1:32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.
- If any of these sins are in us, we are unrighteous according to the bible. Repentance is on us and determines our attitude toward God. There is a power that you can have when you receive God’s Spirit(the Holy Ghost). I do say that it is work to deny yourself as Jesus plainly said in the scripture.
Matthew 16:24-26 (KJV)
24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
25 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.
26 For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
- You will not care for the things of this world when you truly repent. We are not here upon this earth to build kingdoms and fortresses in this life to gain security. Are you aware that we are bought with the blood of Jesus Christ? For he who will deny himself and follow God will indeed have life, not of this world, which one day will pass away and the lust there of; but an eternal glory to forever be with Jesus.
2 Corinthians 7:10-11 (KJV)
10 For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.
11 For behold this selfsame thing, that ye sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you, yea, what clearing of yourselves, yea, what indignation, yea, what fear, yea, what vehement desire, yea, what zeal, yea, what revenge! In all things ye have approved yourselves to be clear in this matter.
- The Greek word (metanoeō) behind repent means more than regret or sorrow, it means to turn around, to change direction, to change the mind and will. It does not denote just any change, but always a change from the wrong to the right, away from sin and to righteousness, a changing of the mind and the purpose from sin to holiness.
- Repentance involves sorrow for sin, but sorrow that leads to a change of thinking, desire, and conduct of life. “The sorrow that is according to the will of God,” Paul says, “produces repentance without regret, leading to salvation” and that includes baptism with water.
Acts 17:30-31 (KJV)
30 And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:
Romans 2:4 (KJV)
4 Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?
Romans 6:16-17 (KJV)
16 Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?
17 But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you.
- Repentance was exactly the same message with which Jesus began His preaching and the apostles began theirs. “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand,” Jesus proclaimed; “repent and believe in the gospel” (Mark 1:15; cf. 3:2; 4:17; Luke 5:32). Mark 6:12 says of the twelve: “And they went out and preached that men should repent.” In his Pentecost sermon, Peter’s concluding words were, “Repent, and let each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins” (Acts 2:38; cf. Acts 3:19; 20:21; 26:18).
- The objective of his ministry was that men, “should repent and turn to God, performing deeds appropriate to repentance.”