Repent or Perish

GUWG-Fig-TreeWe continue our journey into every word spoken by Jesus in the Gospels to help us all KNOW JESUS MORE NOW.

Some religious people of Jesus’ day believed that calamities were the result of God’s disfavor. Jesus addressed that notion head-on by discussing two major events: (1) the massacre by the Romans of Galileans who had come to Jerusalem to worship and (2) the collapse of a tower in Siloam that killed eighteen people:

Repent! (Please.)

GUWG-Cross-PrayWe continue our journey into every word spoken by Jesus in the Gospels to help us all KNOW JESUS MORE NOW.

Here’s today’s rather sobering selection:

Then Jesus began to denounce the towns in which most of his miracles had been performed, because they did not repent. “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you. And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted to the heavens? No, you will go down to Hades. For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Sodom, it would have remained to this day. But I tell you that it will be more bearable for Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.”

(Matthew 11:20-24)

Yikes.

Repent!

GUWG-U-turnWe continue our journey into every word spoken by Jesus in the Gospels to help us all KNOW JESUS MORE NOW.

Yesterday, we started discussing Jesus’ first recorded sermon: “The time has come. The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!”

We began by discussing the first 11 words. Today, we’ll focus on the 12th: REPENT.

Sunday Solitude

Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed. (Luke 5:16)

Be like Jesus. Get alone with your Heavenly Father and pray.

Today’s prayer suggestion is one of the “penitential psalms” from David, whom God called “a man after my own heart.”

Pray through it with all your heart.

U-turn

“Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.” (Matthew 3:2, 4:17)

John the Baptist started his ministry with those words. So did Jesus. In my book, that means we should probably pay attention.

What exactly does “repent” mean? Basically, it’s turning away from our sins and back toward God.

Here’s how it works in my life …

God gives me pretty clear directions on where He’d like me to go. But sometimes when His way gets a bit narrow or rough I toss His directions aside and take a detour.

Jesus’ First Message

We continue our 40-day journey deeeep into the of Jesus.

Here we discussed Jesus’ first words. Here we talked about Jesus’ first miracle.

Today’s topic? Jesus’ first message.

It was only eight words.  Here it is:

Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near. (Matthew 4:17)

Interestingly, Jesus’ cousin John the Baptist started his ministry with those exact same words. (Matthew 3:2)

So, what exactly did Jesus and John mean? Today, we’ll look at the first word. Tomorrow we’ll look at the other seven.

Ashes to Ashes

Dust you are and to dust you will return.
(Genesis 3:19)

Repent and believe the good news!
(Mark 1:15)

Today Christians all over the world are observing Ash Wednesday.

What Exactly Is Ash Wednesday?

Traditionally, Ash Wednesday is a day of intense repentance and reflection that kicks off the Lent Season. Many gather in churches to receive the sign of the cross on their foreheads in ashes (typically from palm leaves burned after the prior year’s Palm Sunday service).

Ashes represent sorrow for sinning — or “missing the mark” on how God wants His people to live.