1. During His ministry Jesus revealed a number of reasons why He came. a. (Matthew 5:17) He came to fulfill the law and the prophets. b. (Luke 19:10) He came "to seek and to save that which was lost." c. (John 10:10) He came so we could have life and have it more abundantly. d. (Mark 2:17) He revealed another reason why He came. 2. On this occasion Jesus called "Levi" [Matthew] to follow Him. 3. Matthew prepared a meal at his home. a. Jesus and His disciples were there. b. Many publicans and sinners were also there. 4. Jesus was criticized for eating with such people. 5. As Jesus answered these critics He revealed one of His reasons for coming to earth -- He came to call sinners to repentance. 6. Since repentance was involved in the Lord's coming, He certainly considers repentance to be a very important subject. 7. In our lesson we are examining a number of passages that teach us what the Lord wants us to know about "repentance."
I. THE SCRIPTURES TEACH WHAT REPENTANCE IS
A. Repent: "to change the mind" 1. This is illustrated by the fact that God repented on a number of occasions. a. (1 Samuel 15:11) "It repenteth me that I have set up Saul to be king." b. (Jonah 3:10) "And God repented of the evil, that He had said that He would do unto them; and He did it not." 2. When God repented He changed His mind. 3. Another illustration is seen in Luke 15:17 -- the prodigal son repented "when he came to himself." 4. Repentance is a change of mind; however, . . . B. The fruit of repentance is a change of life (Matthew 3:7-8). C. Repentance is much more than just being sorry for something we have done -- it is a change of mind that results in a change of life (Matthew 21:28-31).
II. THE SCRIPTURES REVEAL WHO IS REQUIRED TO REPENT
A. God requires everyone to repent (2 Peter 3:9). B. To be more specific,: 1. sinners must repent in order to be saved (Acts 2:38) 2. Christians must repent when we sin (Acts 8:22) 3. churches must repent. a. (Revelation 2:5) The church in Ephesus had left its first love. b. (Revelation 2:16) The church in Pergamos was involved in sinful practices. c. (Revelation 3:3) The church in Sardis was dead. d. (Revelation 3:19) The church in Laodicea was lukewarm. C. Jesus revealed what will happen to those who refuse to repent (Luke 13:3, 5).
III. THE SCRIPTURES REVEAL CERTAIN FACTORS THAT SHOULD MOTIVATE US TO REPENT
A. The goodness of God (Romans 2:4). B. Judgment to come (Acts 17:30-31). C. Godly sorrow for sin (2 Corinthians 7:10). D. The fact that repentance produces joy in heaven (Luke 15:10).
1. God's forgiveness is dependent upon our willingness to repent. 2. True repentance can be a challenge because it requires humility and submission to God's will. 3. However, a humble person who repents is able to experience inner peace because he knows that his life is right with the Lord.