[PC-USA]  1999-12-05 - Passages about Repentance

The Advent Passages Series, Part 2

John the Baptist is often mentioned in Advent sermons, devotionals and readings. His mission was to encourage people to prepare their hearts for Jesus' coming. A crucial step on that pathway was, and still is for us today, repentance. This is not metamelomai, which is "a change of mind&ngsp;… but not necessarily a change of heart."1 This was the repentance expressed by Judas. Rather, our repentance should be metanoia, "...a change of mind and purpose and life." 1 Today we will see passages about repentance.

Calls to Repentance

Mat 3:1 (NRSV) In those days John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness of Judea, proclaiming, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near."

Mat 4:17 (NRSV) From that time Jesus began to proclaim, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near."

Acts 2:38-39 (NRSV) Peter said to them, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of  Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit." For the promise is for you, for your children, and for all who are far away, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to him."

Individual Repentance

Psa 41:4 (NRSV) As for me, I said, "O LORD, be gracious to me; heal me, for I have sinned against you."

Corporate Repentance

Neh 1:6-9 (NRSV) Let your ear be attentive and your eyes open to hear the prayer of your servant that I now pray before you day and night for your servants, the people of Israel, confessing the sins of the people of Israel, which we have sinned against you. Both I and my family have sinned. We have offended you deeply, failing to keep the commandments, the statutes, and the ordinances that you commanded your servant Moses. Remember the word that you commanded your servant Moses, 'If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the peoples; but if you return to me and keep my commandments and do them, though your outcasts are under the farthest skies, I will gather them from there and bring them to the place at which I have chosen to establish my name.'

God's Promised Blessings in Response to Our Repentance

2 Chr 7:14 (NRSV) If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, pray, seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

Mat 4:13 (NRSV) He left Nazareth and made his home in Capernaum by the sea, in the territory of Zebulun and Naphtali, so that what had been spoken through the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled: Land of Zebulun, land of Naphtali, on the road by the sea, across the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles--the people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, and for those who sat in the region and shadow of death light has dawned."

1 Definitions from Easton Bible Dictionary (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.) © 1996