A study of repentance (4)

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holy-bible

Erasmus Makarimayi
FOR now, we let us round up our inquiry into the subject of repentance. As we do so, certain important points will be highlighted and repeated from earlier instalments for emphasis. The doctrine of Christ or the Gospel of Christ should be a message so clear and simple that the unsaved person can see Jesus as their saviour and Lord. We should make the message so easy to grasp that our audience can see that all they need to do is to act upon the Word. Do not tell them that they need to believe. That’s the work of the Holy Spirit to a spiritually dead person who is listening to the Grace of God.

We read in Romans 10:9-10: “[9] That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. [10] For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” With the lips she/he makes confession of her/his salvation. Now notice it carefully. Jesus belongs to them, but He is of no value to them until they confess His Lordship over their dead nature. Eternal Life belongs to them, but they never get it. They never have any benefit from it until they accept Christ as their personal saviour and confess His Lordship.

At that moment, then they become a new creation in Christ Jesus. The old things pass away the moment eternal life comes into their spirit. The moment the sinner accepts Jesus Christ she/he does an about turn. However, she/he can’t do it unless she/he accepts what God has wrought for her/him in Christ. The unsaved person has the ability to confess Jesus Lord over her/his existence with the lips. We say existence because without the Life of the resurrected Christ, they are dead. The proof is 1 John 5:12: “He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.”

So we don’t give our lives to Christ to be saved or born again, but we receive His life to start living. This life is eternal. The unsaved has the ability to make the decision to take Christ as their saviour. God’s hands are tied until she/he makes that confession. God the Father doesn’t ask a sinner to confess her/his sins. That is a self-evident fact. Confessing sins cannot bring everlasting life. As I said, I repeat. God the Father doesn’t ask a sinner to confess her/his sins. She/he is a sinner. However God demands that she/he confess the Lordship of Jesus. That done, she/he confesses her/his faith in the substitutionary work that Christ wrought on their behalf.

Now we can understand Ephesians 2:4-10: “[4] But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, [5] Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) [6] And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: [7] That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. [8] For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: [9] Not of works, lest any man should boast. [10] For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” The word quickened in verse 5 means made alive.

Some important notes. Once saved, always saved. Please note that there are many in the church who are not saved. We are saved by grace and we live by grace. The Christian faith is very open to everyone. Jesus tells us in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Are we secure to the end? Jesus says in John 10:28-30: “[28] And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. [29] My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand. [30] I and my Father are one.” Live in assurance and confidence.

Fear and sense of guilt and condemnation should be far from you. Talking of Jesus, we are saved eternally. We hear it in Hebrews 7:24-25: “[24] But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. [25] Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.” Jesus our Intercessor is praying for you. Now unto Him who is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy. To the only wise God our saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen. Grace and peace be multiplied to you through knowledge.