Sunday, November 17, 2013

To Judge Ourselves Part 12 – Repentance & Salvation

To Judge Ourselves
Part 12 – Repentance & Salvation
Pastor Bruce A. Shields
House of Faith Church | |

We spent the last year looking at what the Book of Acts had to say about the founding, operation and behavior that the Lord expects from us as individuals, and as a church, or congregation of believers.

We then spent a few weeks looking at the letters that Jesus sent to the seven churches in Revelation, telling them where they were going right, and wrong, as well as what the punishments and rewards would be.

A few weeks ago, I took all of those letters, and compiled them into one letter from the Lord, to us.

Our new series will take a look at each of the points Jesus made in that letter, and we will not only examine our church as a whole, but ourselves as individuals.

2 Corinthians 13:5 "Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!"

1 John 1:9 "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

2 Peter 2:4-10 "For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell[a] and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment; if he did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a herald of righteousness, with seven others, when he brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly;[c] and if he rescued righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked (for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard); then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment, 10 and especially those who indulge[e] in the lust of defiling passion and despise authority."

We have already looked at Jesus speaking to us about hard work, not tolerating wicked people in the church, and testing those who claim to be apostles, but are nothing more than false prophets, and last week we spoke on perseverance, and enduring hardships for His name, Spiritually Rich during times of affliction and poverty, Slander, Not Being Afraid, Where Satan Rules, Faithfulness, Deeds, The Open Door.

Last week we looked at First Love.

This week we will look at Repentance and Salvation.

Revelation 2:1-2; 5
 “These are the words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand and walks among the seven golden lampstands. I know your deeds..."

 "Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place."

The Lord makes it clear...without repentance, there is no Salvation.

If you do not repent, the Lord will remove your lampstand from its place.

“What is Salvation”, or saved?  This is question that is on the minds of many today.  How can I know I am saved?

This question has also puzzled many since Christ came and paid the price of sin we could not afford. It is nothing new either; we can see from scripture that there were questions about Salvation as far back as the history of the church itself.

We see that John wrote his first epistle to clarify and answer the questions many had about salvation.

So let us look to the scriptures today so that you may know you are saved, and have an eternal life with the Lord.
More than repentance, we must evaluate our position and relationship with the Lord.

I John 5:13
13 I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.”
I.                   DO YOU BELIEVE?

a.      The word “believe” in verse 13 here is the Greek word Pist-yoo-o. Its literal meaning is ‘to commit’. 

                                                             i.      the word “on” is literally the Greek word Ice, which means “to” or “unto”

                                                          ii.      the word translated into “name” is the Greek word on-om-ah, which refers to authority.

                                                       iii.      I John 5:13 Should have read; “These things have I written unto you who are committed to the authority of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may Commit to the authority of the Son of God.”

                                                         iv.      What John is really saying is that if we commit to the authority of Christ, and then we know we have eternal life.  Why does he repeat that you may commit to the authority again?  John is saying that we commit, and continue to commit to the authority of Christ.

b.     To believe in the Lord means more than simply thinking He exists

                                                             i.      James 2:19 “You believe that there is one God.  Good!  Even the demons believe that — and tremble.”

                                                          ii.      Belief is not enough, what we need is commitment!  The questions should never be, “Do you believe in Jesus?”, rather “Are you committed to Jesus?”

                                                       iii.      “How do you know you are saved?”  The scriptures say to look first at your commitment to Christ.

c.      I said the prayer of salvation and was baptized!

                                                             i.      A young man came to me one afternoon to tell me that he was a Christian even though he was a practicing homosexual living in sin.  He told me of his conversion and showed me his certificate of baptism.

1.      I first told him it was not me he was trying to convince, but himself, and what I think makes no difference. It will be the Lord who judges him, not me.
2.      Secondly, Jesus died on the cross to FREE those who are committed to Him from sin (Acts 13:39), so we would no longer be its slave, under its bondage (Romans 6).  It would no longer be our master (Romans 6:14).

a.      Why is it important that sin is no longer our master when we commit to Christ?

                                                                                                                                      i.      (Matthew 6:24; Luke 16:13) No one can serve two masters!

                                                                                                                                   ii.      You are either a slave to sin, or a slave to righteousness!

b.     John 8:24 “Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.”

3.      When you are committed to Christ, you are no longer a slave to sin, under its control, but you become a slave to righteousness! (Romans 6:18)

                                                          ii.      You see, Jesus tells us, it is not about what sin you are living in, all sin is bondage, and all sin makes you its slave.  Salvation is being committed to Christ, therefore becoming a slave to righteousness because Jesus has freed you from sin!

d.     When you question your salvation, ask yourself, are you committed to Christ, or are you living in a sin?


a.      Christians Never Sin

                                                             i.      Well, we know that is not true!

1.      In fact, Jesus in Revelation is CORRECTING Christians who were sinning!

2.      He commanded they REPENT, or else He would remove their lampstand!

                                                          ii.      What we should say is, “Christians will not continue to live in sin”.  To say Christians never sin is incorrect...we are not perfect, and Jesus makes it clear that sin is impossible to avoid without Him.  We cannot live perfect lives though.  If we could be perfect, we would not have needed Jesus.  Christians do sometimes commit a sin.

1.      If you are angry with someone unjustly, or behave in a manner towards a person, fueled by selfishness or self-centeredness, you have just committed a sin.

2.      You have two choices as a follower committed to Jesus Christ at this point.

a.      Continue in that sin, thus living in sin and making that sin your master, walking away from your commitment to Christ.

b.     Confess your sin and repent, therefore returning your commitment to Christ and avoiding that sin!

c.      This equates to OBEDIENCE, which is the first mark of someone who is saved.

b.     OBEDIENCE, the first mark of Salvation

                                                             i.      I John 2:3-63 We know that we have come to know him (remember, Jesus condemned those on Judgment Day, if He did not know them!) if we keep his commands. 4 Whoever says, “I know him,” but does not do what he (the Lord) commands is a liar, and the truth (Jesus) is not in that person. 5 But if anyone obeys his word, love for God is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in him: 6 Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did.”

1.      Are you saved?  Do you Obey His Word?

c.      LOVE is the second mark of Salvation

                                                             i.      I John 3:14-1514 We know that we have passed from death to life (eternal life), because we love each other. Anyone who does not love remains in death. 15 Anyone who hates a brother or sister (believer in Christ) is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him.”

1.      Are you saved? Do you love your fellow followers of Christ?

                                                             i.      I John 5:1-51 Everyone who believes (as in having faith) that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves the father loves his child as well. 2 This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands. 3 In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, 4 for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. 5 Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.”

                                                          ii.      Are you Saved? Do you have faith that Christ was sent by God, and do you love God by obeying His commands?

e.      If you are concerned about your salvation, examine yourself.  Are you living as Jesus did?

                                                             i.      By measuring ourselves against Christ, the Word of God will expose our sin to us, and we can confess and repent.

                                                          ii.      I John 3:4-6 4 Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness. 5 But you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin. 6 No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him.”

1.      If you are committed to Christ, you do not “keep on sinning”

2.      If you continue to sin, the Word of God says you have not seen God, nor known Him.

3.      One who has obtained Salvation, sees the sin in their lives, and STOPS SINNING!

4.      If you find yourself in have stepped away from the Lord, and must repent (which means to turn away from) your sin, and return to a commitment to the Lord.

f.       You may be surprised...

                                                             i.      God’s Word reveals to us that our personal salvation does require effort on our part!


a.      A True Follower of Christ

                                                             i.      Is committed to the Lord, Obeying His commands (which shows our love for God), Loving his brothers and sisters as well as having Faith in Christ, living as Christ lived

b.     A True Follower of Christ, committed to the Lord

                                                             i.      A Follower of Christ Repents & Believes the Gospel of Jesus
1.      Acts 3:19Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out”

                                                          ii.      A Follower of Christ Has a humble heart; allowing God’s Word (seed) to fall upon good ground
1.      Matthew 13:23 “the seed falling on good soil refers to someone who hears the word and understands it. This is the one who produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.”

                                                       iii.      A Follower of Christ is broken & mourns, and grieves when they sin
1.      Luke 18:11-1410 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’

13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’
14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

                                                         iv.      A Follower of Christ has a hunger & discipline to read, study share God’s Word
1.      I Peter 2:2-3 “Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, 3 now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.”

2.      2 Timothy 2:15 “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

3.      Acts 17:11 “Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.

                                                            v.      A Follower of Christ obeys the Word to show their love for Jesus
1.      I Peter 1:14-17 “ 14As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: 15But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
16Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
17And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man's work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:

2.      John 14:15 Jesus says; “If you love me, keep my commands.”

3.      Luke 6:46 Jesus said; “Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?”

4.      Matthew 7:22-23 “Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’”

                                                         vi.      A Follower of Christ forsakes EVERYTHING putting God first
1.      Luke 14:33 “those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples.”

                                                      vii.      They love other believers
1.      John 13:35 “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

                                                   viii.      They do not live as the world does
1.      Romans 12:2 “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

                                                         ix.      They show evidence of their new nature
1.      II Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”

                                                            x.      They fear God and turn away from evil!
1.      Philippians 2:12-13 “Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.”

2.      Proverbs 3:5-75 Trust in the LORD with all your heart
   and lean not on your own understanding;
6 in all your ways submit to him,
   and he will make your paths straight.
7 Do not be wise in your own eyes;
   fear the LORD and shun evil.

                                                         xi.      They bear MUCH FRUIT!
1.      John 15:8 “This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”

2.      Matthew 3:8 “Produce fruit in keeping with repentance.” - prove by the way you live that you have repented of your sins!


The last mark of a true follower of Christ is the fact that right now we are in God’s Word, and He is pointing out to you, your sin.

Confess, repent

Commit to the Lord, and continue to commit, daily!

Obey His Word, and continue to obey.

Love others, and continue to love them.

Put God first in your life, forsaking everything else, and you will be called a child of God’s!

Jesus tells us, if we do not repent, He will remove our lampstand.

Want to learn more about Salvation and Getting Saved?    CLICK HERE!

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