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.
Repent and believe the good news!
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.
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.
We continue our journey into every word spoken by Jesus in the Gospels to help us all KNOW JESUS MORE NOW.
We’re in the midst of a series entitled JESUS ON EVERYTHING, where we’re looking at what Jesus said on a wide variety of subjects with a minimum of commentary from me.
Today’s topic? REPENTANCE. Below is a greatest hits collection of Jesus’ words on that subject.
Jesus kicked off his ministry with this message: