Repent for Salvation - Matthew 5:1
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(A2) Open the session with prayer
(B1) Must Repent
(B2) Matthew 5:1-2 "One day as he saw the crowds gathering, Jesus went up on the mountainside and sat down. His disciples gathered around him, (2) and he began to teach them"
(1) Was Jesus teaching the crowds (the uncommitted) or his disciples (his followers)?
(B3) Jesus directed the most famous sermon ever preached to his disciples (followers) with the crowds listening in. He wanted his disciples to know how to live in a way that God can bless both now AND after we die. It was probably what he taught each new crowd. It's called the "Sermon on the Mount" because it was given on a mountainside.
(B4) The NKJV Study Bible "The essence of this sermon was probably preached many times during Jesus’ early ministry. The Sermon on the Mount was not given as the way of salvation for the lost, but as the way of life for true children of the kingdom. It was instruction for those who had responded to Jesus’ invitation to “repent” (4:17). These disciples were probably confused as to the true nature of righteousness and God’s kingdom. In this address, Jesus clarified both the heart of the law and the nature of true religion in God’s kingdom (see Mic. 6:8)." Why was the Sermon on the Mount given? It was instruction for those who had responded to Jesus’ invitation to _______". So this session will explore what it means to repent.
(B5) Context of the Sermon on the Mount - Here are the four paragraphs right before the Sermon on the Mount - Matthew 4:17-24 "From then on Jesus began to preach, “Repent of your sins and turn to God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near.” (18) One day as Jesus was walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers—Simon, also called Peter, and Andrew—throwing a net into the water, for they fished for a living. (19) Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!” (20) And they left their nets at once and followed him. (21) A little farther up the shore he saw two other brothers, James and John, sitting in a boat with their father, Zebedee, repairing their nets. And he called them to come, too. (22) They immediately followed him, leaving the boat and their father behind. (23) Jesus traveled throughout the region of Galilee, teaching in the synagogues and announcing the Good News about the Kingdom. And he healed every kind of disease and illness. (24) News about him spread as far as Syria, and people soon began bringing to him all who were sick. And whatever their sickness or disease, or if they were demon possessed or epileptic or paralyzed—he healed them all."
(1) What had Jesus' disciples seen Jesus do in the paragraphs right before the Sermon on the Mount?
(2) In v24 was there anyone Jesus didn't heal?
(B6) What is repentance? Matthew 4:17 (a few paragraphs before the Sermon on the Mount) "From then on Jesus began to preach, “Repent of your sins and turn to God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near."
(1) What had Jesus' disciples (followers) already done?
(2) The John MacArthur Bible Commentary "The opening word of this first sermon sets the tone for Jesus’ entire earthly ministry (cf. Luke 5:32 "I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners and need to repent."). Repentance is a constant motif in all His public preaching. And in His closing charge to the apostles, He commands them to preach repentance as well (Luke 24:47 "It was also written that this message would be proclaimed in the authority of his name to all the nations, beginning in Jerusalem: ‘There is forgiveness of sins for ALL who repent.")." Who did Jesus come to call? What did Jesus command his apostles to preach? If a person truly repents will they be forgiven, even if they did horrible sins?
(3) The NLT Life Application Study Bible "Jesus started his ministry with the same message people had heard John the Baptist say: “Repent of your sins.” The message is the same today as when Jesus and John gave it. Becoming a follower of Christ means turning away from our self-centeredness and “self” control and turning our lives over to Christ’s direction and control."
(4) John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on Matthew 4:17 "he begins his preaching in the same words with John the Baptist: because the repentance which John taught still was, and ever will be, the necessary preparation for that inward kingdom."
(5) The ESV Study Bible note on Matthew 3:2 "To repent, or “change one’s mind,” in the Old Testament called for a change in a person’s attitude toward God that impacted one’s actions and life choices; it involved the idea of “turning,” that is, from one way of thinking and LIVING to a different way. Common external signs of repentance included prayers of remorse and confession and renouncing of sin." How does one repent? Fill in the blanks: ("a change in a person’s attitude toward God that impacted one’s ______ and ____ ______")
(6) The CSB Study Bible note on Luke 3:3 repentance is "a change of mind and heart about one’s personal sins".
(7) Here is how the Amplified Bible has Mark 1:15 (it puts the amplifications in brackets) "and saying, “The [appointed period of] time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent [change your inner self—your old way of thinking, regret past sins, live your life in a way that proves repentance; seek God’s purpose for your life] and believe [with a deep, abiding trust] in the good news [regarding salvation]." How does the Amplified Bible describe what it means to repent? To believe?
(8) From "Follow Me" by Jan David Hettinga pg. 172 "Repentance means giving up your kingdom and switching sides. It's the turnaround and the change of mind that allows God's Spirit to take control and rule in our hearts."
(9) The NIV Study Bible on Mark 1:4 "Repentance involves a deliberate turning from sin to righteousness, and John’s emphasis on repentance recalls the preaching of the prophets (e.g., Hos 3:4 – 5). God always grants forgiveness when there is repentance." What does God grant when there is repentance?
(10) Jeremiah 36:3 "Perhaps the people of Judah will repent when they hear again all the terrible things I have planned for them. Then I will be able to forgive their sins and wrongdoings.” When people repent (other translations say "turn from his evil way") what will God do?
(11) 2 Corinthians 7:10 "For the kind of sorrow God wants us to experience leads us away from sin and results in salvation. There’s no regret for that kind of sorrow. But worldly sorrow, which lacks repentance, results in spiritual death." What is the end result of sorrow that lacks repentance?
(12) The MacArthur Study Bible note on 2 Corinthians 7:10 "Repentance is at the very heart of and proves one’s salvation: unbelievers repent of their sin initially when they are saved, and then as believers, repent of their sins continually to keep the joy and blessing of their relationship to God (see notes on 1 John 1:7–9)" If believers want to experience the joy and blessing of their relationship to God what must they continually do?
(13) The MacArthur Study Bible note on 2 Corinthians 7:11 "Just see what this godly sorrow produced in you! Such earnestness, such concern to clear yourselves, such indignation, such alarm, such longing to see me, such zeal, and such a readiness to punish wrong. You showed that you have done everything necessary to make things right." "This verse provides a look at how genuine repentance will manifest itself in one’s attitudes. diligence. Better translated, “earnestness” or “eagerness.” It is the initial reaction of true repentance to eagerly and aggressively pursue righteousness. This is an attitude that ends indifference to sin and complacency about evil and deception. what clearing of yourselves. A desire to clear one’s name of the stigma that accompanies sin. The repentant sinner restores the trust and confidence of others by making his genuine repentance known. indignation. Often associated with righteous indignation and holy anger. Repentance leads to anger over one’s sin and displeasure at the shame it has brought on the Lord’s name and His people. fear. This is reverence toward God, who is the One most offended by sin. Repentance leads to a healthy fear of the One who chastens and judges sin. vehement desire. This could be translated “yearning,” or “a longing for,” and refers to the desire of the repentant sinner to restore the relationship with the one who was sinned against. ..."
(14) The NLT Bible, to make it clear what "repent" means, sometimes translates "repent" as "repent of your sins and turn to God".
(15) What did you like the most from this section?
(B7) Jesus preached repentance - Mark 1:15 "The time promised by God has come at last!” he announced. “The Kingdom of God is near! Repent of your sins and believe the Good News!"
(1) Mark 1:15 was at the beginning of Jesus ministry. What was Jesus message at the beginning of his ministry?
(2) Luke 13:5 "No, and I tell you again that unless you repent, you will perish, too." Luke 13:5 was in the middle of Jesus ministry. What was Jesus' message in the middle of his ministry?
(3) CSB Study Bible on Luke 13.5 "emphasized that every person must repent or else perish spiritually for eternity."
(4) Luke 24:47 "It was also written that this message would be proclaimed in the authority of his name to all the nations, beginning in Jerusalem: ‘There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent." Luke 24:47 was at the end of Jesus ministry. What was Jesus' message at the end of his ministry?
(B8) Peter and Paul preached repentance - Acts 3:19 "Now repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away."
(1) What was Peter's message in Acts 3:19?
(2) Acts 26:20 "I preached first to those in Damascus, then in Jerusalem and throughout all Judea, and also to the Gentiles, that all must repent of their sins and turn to God—and prove they have changed by the good things they do." What was Paul's message? How are we to prove that we have repented?
(B9) What happens to those who don't repent - Luke 3:8-9 "Prove by the way you live that you have repented of your sins and turned to God. ... (9) Even now the ax of God’s judgment is poised, ready to sever the roots of the trees. Yes, every tree that does not produce good fruit will be chopped down and thrown into the fire."
(1) v9 What happens to those who don't have proof that they have repented?
(2) Luke 13:5 "No, and I tell you again that unless you repent, you will perish, too." What does Jesus promise will happen to those who don't repent?
(3) Luke 24:47 "There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent." If one doesn't repent what does one not have?
(B10) Repent and Believe - From ESV Study Bible note on Acts 2:38 "The gospel can be summarized in different ways. Sometimes faith alone is named as the one thing necessary for salvation (see John 3:16; Acts 16:31; Rom. 10:9; Eph. 2:8–9), other times repentance alone is named (Luke 24:47; Acts 3:19; 5:31; 17:30; 2 Cor. 7:10), and sometimes both are named (Acts 20:21). Genuine faith always involves repentance, and vice versa. Repentance includes a change of mind that ends up trusting God (i.e., having faith)."
(1) To become a Christian does one need to both believe and repent?
(2) What does genuine faith always involve?
(3) Repentance includes a change of mind that ends up trusting who?
(B11) Review: Do you agree one must repent in addition to believe? For you, which of the verses above make that clear that we must repent of our sins and turn to God?
(B12) Summary: We must repent of our sins and turn to God because it was what Jesus clearly commanded throughout his ministry and what the leaders of the early church commanded. Other words for repent include "giving control of our lives to God" and "following Jesus and not your own desires". A lot of people in good churches do only 1/2 of Jesus' message, they believe but do not repent and sacrificially prove their repentance by learning and following Jesus' teachings so that they can do the good and be the light he desires them to do.
(B13) Application: Is there any change you can start applying today from some teaching in this session? It might be something to give up or make less of a priority. Write it down so you can remember and do it and discuss how it went next session.