REPENTANCE NEEDS TO BE TRANSFORMATION,
CHANGING US DAILY,
PURIFYING US FROM THE GUILT OF OUR CARNAL SELF,
MAKING US MORE AND MORE LIKE JESUS
But ye have not so learned Christ; If so be that ye have heard Him, and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another. Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Neither give place to the devil. Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath you.
Paul says that the carnal ways in which they were thinking was “not so learned’ from Christ. Christ Jesus does want to teach us truth, common sense. So, if we want transformed more and more into the image of Jesus, we need Jesus.
People have a ‘repentance’ change of mind, and find ourselves thinking like Jesus.This transformation causes us to:
1. Learn the message of Jesus
Ephesians 4:20-21 (KJV)
But ye have not so learned Christ; If so be that ye have heard Him, and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus:
Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.
The message of Jesus is not out-dated. The truths He revealed need to not only be known, but lived by us.
2. Put off the old man
Ephesians 4:22 (KJV)
That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;
2 Corinthians 5:17 (KJV)
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
The ‘old man’, the ‘wretched man’ needs ‘put off’, laid aside. The nonsense of the world says ‘be yourself’, ‘find yourself’, ‘express yourself’, but the Bible tells us to ‘exchange our old reprobate person for a new creation in Christ Jesus. The world calls that crazy, but it is the way to truth, to real common sense.
Too many pamper, hold onto, and prefer the ways of the world that once were their life, but now are to be ‘put off’. We are ‘new creations’, and we should let the ‘new man’ follow Jesus. The ‘old man’ is wanting to go an entirely different direction. The old man calls nonsense to be common sense.
3. Be renewed in mind
Ephesians 4:23 (KJV)
And be renewed in the spirit of your mind
There is renewal of the thinking, from nonsense to common sense, for the weary, embattled spirit. This is a ‘war zone’ called ‘earth’ where the devil is spouting his lies, calling them ‘common sense’ but his ways and ideas lead to judgment and hell. The devil battles us, and we need to let the mind be renewed in Jesus. This is a ‘washing’ renewal from the nonsense, cleansing out the pollution, smoke, and scales that blind.
4. Put on the new man
Ephesians 4:24 (KJV)
And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
The new man is righteous in the Lord. The old man is still wanting to please the flesh. The new man needs ‘put on’ daily, clothing ourselves in the blessed grace of the Lord. What we put on is founded in Jesus and His Word, and is not nonsense, but is common sense.
5. Put away lying and speak truth
Ephesians 4:25 (KJV)
Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.
Lying is a way of life for many. Many think that ‘lying’ is common sense ‘when’... The list of ‘when’ they think lying is good gets longer and longer. Many politicians lie to get elected. Some salespeople often lie to make a sale. Some husbands lie to stay out of trouble. Some wives lie to keep their husband happy. They justify it by saying it is ‘common sense’ that it is all right in certain situations. Some lie about their age, their weight, their work, their feelings. Lying has become so common in many circles that we do not know whom to trust. We need to speak the truth. God says that the damage lies do to our souls, to our person, to our relationship with the Lord, is so great, that it is nonsense to lie, and common sense to tell the truth.
6. Be angry without sinning
Ephesians 4:26 (KJV)
Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:
We can all get angry, but some anger leads to sin, some anger is sinful in itself. What angers us is often justified by claiming it is ‘common sense’, for we have much justification for our anger.
Sometimes sin can anger us. We need to guard our anger, for anger can get rampant and lead to many sins. We are not told to never get ‘angry’ for even the Lord was angered at the disrespect for His Father that He found in the Temple. But we are to ‘be angry, and not sin’. That is the hard part.
Jesus hung on the cross, looking down on those who had unjustifiably beaten Him, mocked Him, and now were crucifying Him. Yet, He forgave them, for they ‘knew not what they were doing’. Is our anger in control as was His? Are we truly thinking ‘common sense’ when we get angry, or is it, when we get to the footstool of our Lord, shown to be a ‘nonsense’ reason for which we were angry?
7. Give no place to the devil
Ephesians 4:27 (KJV)
Neither give place to the devil.
Giving the devil a foothold in our lives is a grave mistake. Lying, anger, pride, greed, etc are sins that give the devil opportunity to corrupt our lives. Some want to tamper with sin and the devil’s temptation. They justify, consider it common sense to play with sin, tamper with sin, laugh at sin in others.
Some have playboy magazines hidden from view, but available if they choose. Some keep alcohol, in case a visitor asks for it, but available if they are ever tempted also. These are ‘giving place to the devil’ and are ‘nonsense’ according to the Bible.
Ephesians 4:28 (KJV)
Let him that stole steal no more:
People steal in many ways. Christians need to quit coveting what is not theirs, lest they be tempted to steal. The Lord gives us all that is needed, and if He does not supply, there is still no right to take from another. The nonsense of the world says it is all right to steal sometimes. Their list of when it is ‘all right’ gets longer and longer. Some steal from the boss, from the neighbor, from the customer, from the estate, from the school, etc. The Bible’s definition of true common sense says that we should ‘steal no more’, it does not make common sense.
9.Work for a living, give to the poor and needy
Ephesians 4:28 (KJV)
...let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.
Society often teaches the nonsense that we are owed a living, owed welfare, owed free medical care, owed. Yet the Bible says we are to labor and to give to those who are needy. Hard work is seldom appreciated in this world.
People vote for who will give the most ‘food stamps’, the longest ‘unemployment’, the most welfare, for they do not want to work. Applicants for jobs often come in with a paper to be signed, so they can continue to get paid by the government, but if you act like you might have a job for them, they explain they are not really looking for one, they only have to get this paper signed.
How much more joyful is a life not spent in seeking to receive, but learning to give. The prosperity heresy being preached in many quarters emphasizes receiving, not giving. They say ‘give to them’ to ‘get’. We find the emphasis of the person gets ‘blinded’ by the thought of the 100 fold return, not on giving that return away. They build barns to hold more and more. The carnal mammon is not satisfying. The rich young ruler who would not give away his fortune did not realize, that he would not have gone away ‘sorrowful’ if he had listened to Jesus.
10. Use the tongue right
Ephesians 4:29 (KJV)
Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.
Sins of the tongue plague the church. Bitterness, grumbling, clamor, debate, blasphemies, heresies are spoken in far too many vestibules. People think that those ways of speaking is common sense, they justify it. The Lord says that sins of the tongue are nonsense, not common sense. The Lord wants us to guard our mouths, and minister ‘grace’ not sinful words.
11. Grieve not the Holy Spirit, rather, put away bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, evil speaking, and malice. Be as kind, tender-hearted, and forgiving as was Jesus Christ. Walk in love, as did Jesus.
Ephesians 4:30-32, 5:1-2 (KJV)
And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you. ...Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet smelling savour.
Imagine a church that obeyed that admonition. Imagine a people who thought those things were ‘common sense’. Yet, instead we have peoples who think those things, or some of them, are common sense, justifiable, and necessary at times.
It does take imagination to imagine a world where those things were considered common sense. We have a world that is blind to what Christianity is supposed to be. It is time we preach the words and message of Jesus. The blindness will lift. Too many in churches do not even know that kind of Christian living, for they are blinded by the smoke of the world.
12. Let not fornication, homosexuality, covetousness, filthiness, foolish talking, and sexual jesting be once named among you as becomes saints.
Ephesians 5:3-4 (KJV)
But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.
1 Corinthians 6:9-11 (KJV)
Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.
Galatians 5:18-21 (KJV)
But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
Colossians 3:5-10 (KJV)
Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry: For which things' sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience: In the which ye also walked some time, when ye lived in them. But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:
Does the Bible need be more plain? Can we say there is no Scripture to tell us these things are sinful? Not only are these things mentioned amidst Christians, they are condoned by some, their evil questioned by others. It is time we call sin to be sin, and take the blindness off the eyes, and have a repentance, change of mind toward sin, and be transformed.
Television programs seem to compete with who can make ‘homosexuality’ look the most normal, most acceptable. We are threatened by the government if we call it a sin. We are told we are ‘homophobic’ for considering it abnormal, in need of repentance. We are told it is not in the Bible that it is sinful, and when we show it is, we are shunned and hated.
Repentance changes us, changes our thinking, to be in line, in harmony with the thinking of Jesus.
TO THINK CONTRARY TO THE ABOVE LIST, IS TO REQUIRE A REPENTANCE, A CHANGE OF HEART, THAT WILL BRING US INTO OBEDIENCE TO THOSE COMMANDS.
WHAT REMEDY, CURE, OR HEALING IS THERE FOR THE SINS THAT REQUIRE MORE CHANGE?
Romans 12:1-2 (KJV)
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
These verses are written to the Romans, but they are inserted by God into the Bible, for they apply to all Christians.
Some of them in Rome had been ‘reprobate’ in mind, thinking nonsense, not common sense truths. Now, we are directed in Romans 12 to come to Jesus. We are to present ourselves, body, soul, and spirit to God. We are to be a ‘living sacrifice’ wholly given to Him. We are to put on His holiness, no longer dirtied by past sins, but washed in Jesus’ blood, be forgiven of our sins, and now (through Jesus) be ‘acceptable.’ This ‘presentation’ of ourselves to the Lord and to His transforming power, is the definition of REPENTANCE.
Then we can break from the world that once was the place of defiling. There are old places, former friends, that would like to draw the former reprobate back into the thoughts that once defiled them. If we do these things, there comes a ‘transformation’ by the ‘renewing of the mind.’ I would far rather have a ‘renewed’ mind than a ‘reprobate’ mind. Both come from God. When mankind wanders away from giving God glory, when they swell up in self pride, when they reject God and His ways, there comes a ‘reprobate’ mind.
When reprobates, filled with nonsense thinking, turn back to God, repent of their sins, become cleansed in the blood of Jesus, refuse to be conformed to the old ways, there comes a ‘new’ mind that replaces the ‘reprobate’ mind. That transformation of thinking is ‘repentance.’ It is not a ‘one time’ saying of ‘I’m sorry’ with no change in thinking, no change in transformation from the sinful thoughts and deeds. Repentance is the choice to ‘present oneself to the Lord so that He can begin a process in us to have a renewed mind.
Far too long, some have not preached this simple gospel message. Many have joined in the parade of reprobates, and pat them on the back calling them normal. No, a reprobate mind is not normal. The Word of God is clear, and we need to preach the truth.
The word for ‘transformed’ is metamorphoo, from which we get the word ‘metamorphosis’. Transfiguring one from the corruptness and perversion of a sinful mind can be done with a ‘transformation. Just as a caterpillar can enter a cocoon, and emerge later as a beautiful butterfly, the reprobate can enter through repentance and faith in Jesus, a process of transformation, and transfiguring into a renewed mind of common sense truth.
Titus 3:4-8 (KJV)
But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by His grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men.
The work of God is His ‘kindness and love.’ It is not ‘works of righteousness’ that we do that saves us. It is the ‘washing of regeneration’ a ‘renewing’ of the Spirit upon us. We are justified by ‘His grace’. Reprobates can become ‘heirs’ in Jesus.
Salvation is the entering of this process. Christianity is the life following, being transformed, more and more, by Jesus, into His image, to the possessing of His way of thinking.
The church, (or should I say many in it) have ceased to ‘affirm constantly’. This is a ‘gospel message’, not a bad, hateful message. Jesus wants to redeem, cleanse, heal, restore, bless, and make reprobates become ‘heirs’ in heaven. This is good news. We do not hate the ‘reprobate’, we preach good news to them.
Transformation begins with an ‘event’, but it continues with a process. The event is a salvation from sin. The Lord loves all people. He sent Jesus to die for our sins. Repentance is what opens the door for the blood to flow in cleansing manner over our lives and minds..
Revelation 3:19-20 (KJV)
As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me.
Sin needs repented, and God is willing to forgive those that repent.
Repentance is a lost word in many areas. It is still a necessary feature to deliverance.
John spoke to Christians in I John. This was not written to sinners, but to those already saved. Notice the often use of ‘we’, and I know that offends some, but they can take it up with the Lord Who inspired John to write these exact words, speaking of the process of repentance that goes on in every child of God after salvation. If we deny this passage, we have no ‘truth’ in us. The ‘we’, ‘us’, and ‘our’ here speak of all Christians.
1 John 1:8-9 (KJV)
If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
At repentance, Jesus forgives and cleanses from all sin. This is a miraculous beginning to transformation. At the moment of salvation, the process begins.
This process is like the process of the caterpillar in the cocoon. I cannot explain all that happens in that cocoon, but the butterfly that emerges is far different than the caterpillar that entered. In the same way, there is a process in our salvation, that continues after the event of salvation. That process is a constant refining, purifying, cleansing from effects of this sinful world. When we stand before Jesus, the ‘butterfly’ we have become is far different than the caterpillar of the reprobate mind.
The reprobate, nonsense mind is forgiven and the spirit of man is given new life, making the person a new creation in Jesus. Old sins are forgiven and forgotten by God. Yet, the body of the former sinner is still in a world of temptation, and their mind still remembers to drawing of the former ways.
Just as an alcoholic gets into a twelve step program and follows a process of maintaining sobriety, there is a process of mind cleansing, and temptation conquering that is in the process of the reprobate mind continuing in victory over the former ways.
Preachers who preach that “it is all right’, the world which insists “it is good”, and politicians who seek votes by affirming the reprobate mind, are great hindrances and need avoided. Former friends in that reprobate mind need witnessed to, not entertained.
Children need taught that the message they are getting from television, from public school, from some political leaders, and even from some in pulpits is not just errant, but heretical and a doctrine of devils.
The Bible needs to become a daily sustenance of spiritual food. Prayer warriors who encourage Godly living need to be found. Friends who are compassionate, not critical, need to be often consulted.
The process of defeating daily the ‘old man’ (as Paul put it) is a process that continues throughout life. REPENTANCE is that process.
Thank God for REPENTANCE.