We believe repentance and faith

Many (if not most) religions believe some form of salvation that is obtained through being good and following a set of rules. So why do we believe the necessity, in order to obtain salvation, of repentance towards God, and of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ?

Small avatar of sermon author David Loader

David Loader


Transcript (Auto-generated)

Good morning everyone. We are continuing our series on uh things we believe is outlined in our constitution so if you've got your constitutions there open them up Dylan said that last week and um I assume that if Dylan said it everybody would have shown up today with their constitutions Dylan they weren't listening to you uh of course we w we expecting that uh we weren't expecting you to bring your constitutions however there's a couple of things you ought to bring every Sunday one is a Bible um whether that's uh the old fashioned ones you book whether it's on your Fame whatever make sure you have a Bible then you need to bring a notebook and of course with the notebook you need to have a pen or pencil or something see every week we're talking about the spiritual life these are things that are important and um rarely is there things that are said that can just well listen to and walk away from but these are important things to apply and so you need to take notes occasionally when we're up here preaching we see people out with their phones taking photos I'm assuming that you're taking a photo of that not of me um is that a right assumption it is yeah um I don't see too many cracked phones but hey that's all right too if you want to take photos of of um the screen um please do that and um of course the Powerpoints that we use are generally find their way onto the um onto the uh website or somewhere sooner or later or if you really want it we can email them to you as well so we continuing on this series on um on on the um on the things that we believe in the church these are not the only things that we believe but these are non-negotiable things that we believe and they're all important very important and uh so today we're looking at uh one of the statements which talks about repentance and faith and salvation um a couple of verses which talk about which give us some idea of it I want to read these to you firstly um Jesus words in Mark chapter 1 and from verses 14 to 20 when he said this or this was his experience said after John was put in prison Jesus went into Galilee proclaiming the good news of God underline that if you're underlying things good news the time has come he said the kingdom of God is near repent and believe the good news kingdom of God uh we live in a kingdom now with King Charles or whatever and uh a king he's just a figurehead but uh we're talking about God as being a reigning King and so the king is over the area over which he has influence or power so kingdom of God is that area over which God has power or influence so the kingdom of God and it's talking not about territory but about people the kingdom of God is near the reign of God what he has power and authority over is here repent and believe the good news this is how we enter the kingdom repent and believe goes on to say as Jesus walked beside the Sea of Galilee he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting in n into the lake for thou a fisherman come follow me Jesus said and I will make you fishes of men at once they left their Nets and followed him say it's repent believe follow me three important things there when God a little father he saw James the son of zebede and his brother John in a boat preparing their Nets without delay he called them and they left their father zebedy in the boat with the high men and followed him so that's the beginning of Jesus ministry we setting the tone and this is what the focus of Jesus ministry is all about everything else about Jesus ministry pointed to this one Central thing this one Central thing the kingdom of God is near you need to repent and believe and follow me and we see that following through in the early Church in this sermon in Acts chapter 2 and from verse 36 see Peter is preaching away on the day of Pentecost and the people s what do we do with this stuff that you've been saying about and this is what Peter's reply is in Acts chapter 2 and from verse 36 Peter replied what's the first word repent and he says repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ why for the Forgiveness of your sins and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit now some people take that verse to think well you need to be baptized to be a Christian the Bible I nowhere says that in about three Sundays time Pastor Dave is going to be talking about baptism and communion he might explain this in a lot more detail but baptism is so connected with repentance it's an outward sign of an inward change this inward change is repentance and it's so connected that I think in Bible times if Peter were around today talking to you or me want us to know about when we came to Faith he could probably ask those two questions when did you repent or when were you baptized because those two were so closely linked but what is it that makes us a Christian it's the repentance not the baptism but they are closely connected okay so we're seeing something of the importance that right the beginning of jesus' ministry U he's setting the tone for his uh his ministry about the kingdom of God about repenting and so too in the early Church in setting the tone for the ministry of the Church of the early Church in the book of Acts we see the same message coming through what do we do with all this information repent and so when it comes to us as a church couple of thousand years later what do you think is a primary message that we need to understand and to take to the world what do you think it might be in one word repent and so that's what we're looking at today and um I'm not sure how good your eyes are or how big that screen is is up there but these are the ones that we have looked at so far and this is the one that we're looking at today in our constitution in Constitution part three subsection one sub subsection whatever it is point seven the the necessity in order to obtain salvation to repentance towards God and to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ it's a non-negotiable For Us fake this is what we believe one of the things other what we've considered so far we've still got another couple to go um but this this is the one we're looking at today the necessity in order to obtain salvation of repentance towards God and of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ so if you're reading that statement um there's probably three words there which I guess that you will um you'll see as being key words and those three words are salvation repentance and Faith so we're going to have a have a quick look at each of these one of the frustrating things about this uh about these series of sermons is some of some of these topics hold books have been written and we've got to cover them all in like uh an hour or however a long we preach for half an hour 25 minutes whatever and uh so it's not only what we do say but sometimes things that we don't say is also important as well so this is what we looking at today I was in grade seven at school which is really really really a long time ago dinosaurs had died out by then uh there were other things that were still occurring the Earth crust was still Cooling and things like that when I was in grade seven I remember my grade seven teacher not so much as a teacher he was a teacher um nothing to really go by as a teacher he was a teacher and uh your view of teachers was fairly standard but it was a bit of a philosopher in some ways because he liked to instill in us things which were probably not in the curriculum but life lessons that um that we needed to be aware of so year seven and there's a few of those which continue to stick in my mind uh however many years later 1967 um I can remember what grade I was in grade 767 so that's that's a few years ago last century even uh but there's this one particular time when he just stood at the front of the class and he fixed his Gaze on a um one of the girls who was sitting over like over in that part of the room next to the window and he just stood there for what seemed like an eternity fixed his Gaze on this uh this girl until he certainly had her attention had my attention and my guess is probably had the whole attention of the class that um that he was this teacher with this gaze just fixed on this girl and then with determination he just strayed over towards her right over to her desk we wondered what was going to happen with this and wondered what had occurred and whatever and he just leaned over from her and just adjusted the window the girl sort of cowed back and he said to her why did you do that have you done something wrong and she said no and he said this remember this if you have not done anything wrong you have nothing to fear Now that statement has stuck with me for all those years if you've done nothing wrong you have got nothing to fear um get pulled over by the police if you've got done nothing wrong you've got nothing to fear or if you like me have done some overseas travel and uh you always go through customs the tendency is when you face with some authority figure to feel this uh sense of guilt but if you've done nothing wrong you've got nothing to fear now I want you to be thinking about this the Bible makes it very clear to us that one day every one of us is going to stand in front of the Lord Jesus and he's going to be there as our judge so we're all going to be there standing in front of him as judge and and the thing is this is the Bible tells us that everything that we've ever done even the secret things that we have ever done is going to be laid open in front of him now let me repeat that statement if you have done nothing wrong you have nothing to fear now I was thinking whether I'd say hands up all those in here this morning who've never done anything wrong but I wouldn't do that but you might think about that I was Eve dropping on one conversation years and years ago when there was one man who was saying that he could never remember ever doing something wrong and the person one of his co-workers he was talking to though having this uh discussion about it if if per chance there's anyone here this morning who thinks that you have never done anything wrong just go home and have a talk with your spouse or another family member or a cooworker or a neighbor or a friend in an honest open conversation and say has have I really been perfect in all my life you see if you've done nothing wrong you have nothing to fear the Bible says there will come a time when we will all face Jesus as judge and if we're not sure and I'm sure we are the Bible even makes it clear makes that state we have all fallen short of God standard none of us there's nobody here according to the Bible nobody who's ever lived other than the Lord Jesus who have walked the perfect life before God and so if we have got done things wrong then we're right to have a fear if we are going to stand before God before the Lord Jesus and he's going to be our judge and this is what this statement that we are talking about today in our constitution one of the non-negotiables the necessity of Salvation re regarding for the necessity of Salvation it requires repentance and faith in the Lord Jesus and and so while we might sit here this morning thinking worried about standing in front of the Lord Jesus as judge just take note of that bottom line there but God has some good news for us and this is what we really need to be taking note of is the good news remember that's how Jesus started the the the S his um his sermon I've got good news for you there's good news the kingdom of God is near repent and believe this good news so before we get on to what the good news is I do want to talk somewhat about things that do not make us a Christian you see there's a lot of people a Christian by the way we're talking about a real Christian here Christian means one who belongs to Christ these are the fair ones okay so one who belongs to Christ what doesn't make a Christian so these are all things that I've heard over my life and you probably have and maybe you've even have used some and who knows you may even be using one or more of these this morning here are some things that people say I'm right when I stand before God as judge because but none of these are going to work one I belong to a Christian family that won't make you a Christian I live in a Christian country or I live a good life you want to clarify what the order is there Ephesians 2:8 to 10 is worthwhile reading there or I attend church regularly or I was christened or baptized as a baby or I belong to another religion or a loving God will accept me no matter what so here are things that people tend to say that one or more of these things are in my life and so when I stand before Jesus's judge I'll pull out one of these statements and this will be okay I want to say very carefully today that this is not this is not going to get you into heaven and so it's very important that U if you were thinking that one of these statements is your statement it's just so important that you're listening to what I'm saying today so the first thing we want to talk about is salvation Salvation is this whole aspect of you know one day I can stand in the presence of Jesus as judge and you'll say not guilty isn't that fantastic to be able to hear those words after all the things that I've done that Jesus has wiped that slight CL CLE and says not guilty you you're right come and enter in into heaven I've just chosen three verses here which um which I think demonstrate these things Angel speaking to Joseph um before Jesus was born speaking of Mary said this to Joseph she that is Mary will bring a son to birth and when she does you Jud Joseph will give him the name Jesus and the name Jesus means God Saves and why will Jesus be given that name because he will save his people from their sins we chose our kids' names uh because it sounded good not so much because the meaning of them my parents the same I was given the name David uh because my mom liked it Dad didn't there that radio serial dad and Dave and he thought we're going to get branded with that and um and so uh I was without a name apparently for a few days and um the nurses used to come into my mother and say oh how's this poor baby hasn't got a name yet and my mom got the stage of saying to my dad um if you don't like David you choose the name and my dad being a wise man says all right you can have what you want woman or went to that effect I'm sure he said it with a lot more affection but there is one condition that I'd be called David and not Dave so I still go by the name David some people he call me Dave and that's okay I'll answer to just about anything and I know I get called a lot of other things too but here the name was given to Jesus for this specific purpose because it described something about what he was going to be doing you will call him Jesus because because this name means savior he will save his people from their sins and then Jesus speaking to his uh his disciples in Mark 10 speaking about himself said this he said for the son of man himself has not come to be served but to serve and to give his life to set many others free or some versions say to give his life is a ransom for many so when we stand before Jesus as judge all our things are laid out and he says this is a punishment what this verse is saying if we trust Jesus he's taken a punishment for us he's taken that punishment he's dealt with it and that's why when I stand before Jesus and most of us when we stand before Jesus he's going to say innocent why because he's already taken the punishment for our sin and what's the motivation for this John 3:16 what a tremendous verse it is it's no wonder it's probably one of the most favorite verses in the whole of scripture this is how much God loved the world he gave his son his one and only son and this is why so that no one need be destroyed by believing in him anyone can have a whole and Lasting life U that's what salvation is all about the the motivation is um is the love of God um some people say there's God is really god of love how can he send all these people to eternal hell and whatever fact God doesn't send us there we send ourselves there and God because of his love is said hey here's the alternative I'm offering you the alternative that if you believe in the Lord Jesus then you can have your sins forgiven and that you can have eternal life someone said once and said it before you know somebody said how to Jesus how much does he love us and he said this much and he stretched out his arms and died for us that's what this verse is talking about which we're going to remember very clearly in a couple of weeks time so that's salvation about getting right with God about the having this whole sin issue dealt with so the punishment is done away with and that we can belong to the family of God but we need to understand very clearly that this is not automatically applied to everybody not everybody is going to be saved but there is something that we must do and the first thing is what our constitution says it's not that what the Constitution says is important it's what the Bible say is important is that we need to remember what it said in Mark 1115 what Jesus said repent and believe or remember what we said what Peter said on the day of Pentecost repent and be baptized the key word here is this word repent and so in the simplest possible way of explaining repentance repentance means doing a uturn in my life transferring the ownership of my life from me over to God most of us probably have a GPS in our car if not we have somebody who navigates for us and um you know how you're driving along and you've gotten the GPS where you're supposed to go and if your GPS is like mine uh it says turn here um and you're doing 60k or whatever down the road or whatever and um and so it says too late often so you're driving down and you haven't gone too far and what does the GPS voice say to you your stupid get it's a turn back there do a yui Chuck a yui and go back um it probably says it different to that but the message is there is that we're going in One Direction and we've missed the turn and we have to do a urn and go back in its simplest form that's what repentance is repentance is doing this uturn in my life of where no longer do I live for me but now I'm living for God no longer do I say I'm the boss of my own life but rather I'm saying God I want you to be boss of my life I want you to be in control in my life that's what repentance is and you see it's not just a state of mind or an attitude that we have but it's actually an action which takes place a bit more understanding about repentance the Greek word metoo means to change one's mind or to change one's purpose to think differently it's a radical change which takes place in our life it's not just well a slight adjustment it's a very much a you I'm no longer going that way but I'm going this way I'm no going no longer going that that way doing whatever I want but now I'm going that way doing whatever God wants in my life couple of well it's how important it is um the word repent and repentance those the group of words there occurs like 66 times in the New Testament that's how important it is just a couple of verses that says here I preached that they should repent and turn you see that's the uturn I preach that they should repent and turn to God and here's the action and demonstrate their repentance by their deeds or once it's Gans 1:9 when Paul was writing to the church at thessalonica he said about when he thought about them or the message that he got about the church at thessalonica how you turned to God from Idols you see there's you turn how you turn to God from idols and the action to serve the living and true God so there's salvation it's necessary to escape God's judgment how do we get salvation the first thing is to do a you to in our lives it's repentance handing over the ownership of the of Our Lives transferring it Frank Sinatra which some of you older people have heard of will before my time you he sang that song which is so famous I Did It My Way um that's the sinful life and what we is God's people saying I did it God's way and so there's salvation there's repentance and what is Faith sometimes we think faith is talk about Blind Faith but I want to say this is that faith is um not blind but faith is stepping out not into darkness but into the light that God has given it's important we understand that that faith is not steep out blindly but this is what God has said and if God has said that then I'm stepping out into that and we know that God is light and while we may not fully appreciate or understand or comprehend all of this I know that I'm stepping into the light which God offers there the Bible says Bible says a lot about faith just a couple here it says Hebrews 11:6 it's without faith it's impossible to please God it is by faith not by what we do or don't do remember that list I showed just a while ago here's this list of things that won't get you into heaven it's by faith that we obtain salvation and to put it as simply as I can what faith is trust and Obey I'm trusting God and I'm going to be obedient to him to trust God to trust that Jesus has his best in store for us and I'm going to be obedient to him so what are the practical steps in how all this comes about let me just suggest an a b c and d one we need to admit our sinfulness we need to admit that um you know I'm not perfect I've done a lot of things wrong in my life a lot of it you know about but there's a whole lot more that you don't know about to believe in Jesus repent and believe the good news to call on Jesus as Savior that's the repentance part of it and then also we'll be seeing the need to declare that that inward change to declare that in baptism ABCD admit believe call and declare otherwise we declare it as well of course by sharing our testimony and so on one story and I'm through folk um there lived a man quite a long time ago um I'm not sure you say Augustine or Augustine depends what school you went to I guess so he was born in 354 and died in the year 430 born in North Africa his dad was a public servant and his mom his name was Monica his name mother's name was uh name was Monica his mother was a Christian when Augustine or Augustine when he was about 19 he really went off the rails and started Living his own life and we I went off the rails living the wild life you know the old picture wine women and song um that that was the sort of life he lived the age of 19 he actually met this uh young lady and they moved in together um never married but they lived together for however long and he talks about his years those the nine years from ages 19 to 28 talks about them as being nine Wasted Years about living this um this wild life he and his woman uh they had a had a son um by the way we never know we've never known what the name of this woman was it just seems like it was um it was his way of protecting her by uh by never naming her that they had a son and then in somewhere in life he became a Christian when he was like 28 years of age and became one of the most famous Christians in in our history they talk about four the four doctors of the early church and he's one of them and so how did he become a Christian well a couple of things one was his mother who's a Christian prayed every day for him in fact in his book he he says there that his mother prayed daily with tears for him and while he lived his life of wine women song Living this this wild life he U he still knew that there is this emptiness in life there's not no satisfaction there was still something missing now there may even be people here this morning who are like that who in the pursuit of satisfaction and whatever in life have tried all sorts of things but there's still something missing and by the way whenever I've Le people Faith invariably I found in talking with them there's been somebody in the background being praying for them and so more than likely there's somebody praying for you and if you're a Christian hopefully you've got somebody in your pre list on your pre list who you were praying for regularly may be daily with tears as well but here he was sort of at the end of his tether living life to the full he thought but still something missing sitting in the garden his mother prayed for him that day and he was sitting in the garden at this table over the fence over the wall from him with some kids playing he says in his book that he doesn't know whether they were girls or boys so obviously they are young kids they're boys they prepuberty the voice is still you know sounding OD still high whatever and at part of this game these kids were changing this recurring theme take up and read take up and read take up and read and you know what sitting on the table where he was in the garden just happened to be a Bible and I wouldn't recommend you do this but it does show that God can use any way to get somebody's attention he just picked up his Bible flicked it open and read the first things that his eyes came over this is what he read he read Romans 1313 and4 remember what sort of Life he's living living with this woman unmarried had a son wine women song Living wildly and this is what he read in Romans 1313 and4 let us behave decently as in the daytime not in carousing and drunkenness not in sexual immoral immorality and debauchery not in dissension and jealousy rather clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh there's one word for that fol repent he didn't write of course our constitution but he could well have written that the ne the necessity in order to obtain salvation of repentance towards God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ he wrote A Few books said it was like you know around 400 ad I've got one of them it's called the confessions of St Augustine um it was written in Latin it's translated obviously I've got a translation which was done a few years ago and just in preparing of this I read this book a number of years ago and I've highlighted a number of things I didn't reread the book of the last week but I went through reread all my highlights that um when I read it number of years ago and the confessions of St Augustine is this there the need for repentance and the need to do a thorough job in repenting some of his quotes is these faith is to believe what you do not see the reward of this faith is to see what you believe he also said pray as though everything depended on God work as though everything depended on you and here is a key one for the context of our story today our heart is restless until it rests in you fol where are you in your life today we believe this but we believe this for a purpose and just as Jesus in the start of his ministry said the kingdom of God is near repent and believe just as the early church when they were challenged what do we need to do repent and be baptized it's a message one of the non-negotiables in our church that we want to say today to you and to whoever else who listen for salvation you need to repent and believe in the Lord Jesus if you've never done that there is no no better day to do that than today there's no better time to do that than to do that right now in a moment we're going to pause we're going to have a just a moment of Silent reflection I'm not going to ask you to do or say anything out loud I just want this to be a sacred moment between you and God that if you've never given your heart to Jesus what's stopping you and sitting right where you are right now you can do that urn in your life and turn your life over to Jesus or maybe today you've never fully understood this and maybe today it's become a lot clearer and you need to do a thorough job in repenting then do that and and if you're in that case then please make sure you share that with somebody today before you leave if you need more information say look I sort of understood but not fully understood it but you know stacks of us here today more than happy to spend more time with you and if today all of this has happened for you and who are you praying for In This Moment of quietness you might say Lord impress on me somebody so much deep in my life that I want to pray for them every every day the time will come and they'll accept the Lord Jesus as their savior let's pray let's close our eyes make quietness just between you and God you can think through your thoughts God can read your thoughts no need to speak out loud and have this open Frank discussion with you the necessity of Salvation to repent to do a you T have fa Faith have trust and Obey in the Lord Jesus it's because of your great love father that you sent the Lord Jesus to die for us and we cannot say in your presence if I've never done anything wrong because I know I have I'm so grateful father that because of the Lord Jesus that do I repent and have faith in him all that punishment all that has been dealt with done away with and you see me not the way I used to be but you see Jesus in his name name we pray. Amen.