Repentance To Life

Acts 10:9-16
“The next day, as they went on their journey and drew near the city, Peter went up on the housetop to pray, about the sixth hour. Then he became very hungry and wanted to eat; but while they made ready, he fell into a trance and saw heaven opened and an object like a great sheet bound at the four corners, descending to him and let down to the earth. In it were all kinds of four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, creeping things, and birds of the air.
And a voice came to him, “Rise, Peter; kill and eat.” But Peter said, “Not so, Lord! For I have never eaten anything common or unclean.”
And a voice spoke to him again the second time, “WHAT GOD HAS CLEANSED YOU MUST NOT CALL COMMON.”
This was done three times. And the object was taken up into heaven again.”
(Peter’s rooftop vision)
What a strange dream!  What did the Lord mean by that last statement?  Who was He talking about?  He was referring to Gentiles!
Easy Believism??
Ever hear the term, “Easy believism?”  Where in the world do people come up with some of these ridiculous phrases?  I’ll bet if they knew they were taking pot shots at the REAL GOSPEL they’d probably stop.  At least, I hope they would.  Of course, what they mean by “Easy Believism,” is some kind of counterfeit gospel that preaches men-pleasing doctrines.
Sin Consciousness.
These folks are always saying the same tired old thing: “You have to get people to repent!” making it all about man’s doing.  Sadly, their idea of repentance is nothing more than “Sin consciousness,”  that puts people under condemnation.  You can be very sad and remorseful and not be repentant.  Judas was very sad and remorseful over what he did, and we know what happened to him:   He hung himself and went to hell!  So you see, just because someone is “Remorseful” doesn’t necessarily mean that repentance is going on.  True repentance is simply a change of mind.
Which word in Romans 8 verse 1 do these folks who cry for “Repentance,” not understand?

(For more on the meaning of repentance in the Hebrew letters, follow this link: http://emmausrevelations.blogspot.com/2014/07/repentance-days-of-t.html)

Those who cry aloud, beating their breast, or doing some kind of self mutilation is not repentance.  They are trying to earn or merit forgivenesses by their actions.  But is there anything any of us can “DO” to merit salvation?  NO.  NOTHING.

It’s All About Jesus!
This “teaching” can be found in only one place, in what I like to call, the “DSV: ” The DIS-torted Version.”   Church, It isn’t about you or I:  IT’S ALL ABOUT JESUS…..PERIOD.
The funny thing is, the real Gospel actually is EASY TO BELIEVE IN.  But you know who loves to complicate it, hide the truth and have you looking AT you instead of TO JESUS, right?  The devil, that’s who.  Well, far too often the church unwittingly helps him with his cause.
Gentiles Get Saved!
Remember the VERY FIRST TIME the Gentiles heard the Gospel?  Peter was called to go to the house of Cornelius, the Italian Centurion, and preach the Gospel.
Remember him?  Let’s continue the story.
Acts 10:1-6
 “…A centurion of what was called the Italian Regiment, a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always.”
“About the ninth hour of the day he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God coming in and saying to him, “Cornelius!” And when he observed him, he was afraid, and said, “What is it, lord?”
So he said to him, “Your prayers and your alms have come up for a memorial before God. Now send men to Joppa, and send for Simon whose surname is Peter. He is lodging with Simon, a tanner, whose
house is by the sea. He will tell you what you must do.”
Why didn’t the Angel just preach the gospel to him?  Because it can only be preached by sinners saved by grace!  This good news has been entrusted to us!
Cornelius Sends Men To Find Peter.

“…7 Cornelius called two of his household servants and a devout soldier from among those who waited on him continually. So when he had explained all these things to them, he sent them to Joppa.”

(Cornelius’ servant comes to find Peter)
As Peter sat wondering about his vision and what it all meant, THREE MEN came knocking at his door looking for him.  There’s that number “THREE” again.  Jesus knew that the number three, in particular, resonated with him.  He wanted Peter to know without a doubt that God’s fingerprints were all over what He was going to be asking him to do.
“…Then Peter went down to the men who had been sent to him from Cornelius, and said, ‘Yes, I am he whom you seek. For what reason have you come?’
And they said, ‘Cornelius the centurion, a just man, one who fears God and has a good reputation among all the nation of the Jews, was divinely instructed by a holy angel to summon you to his house, and to hear words from you.’ Then he invited them in and lodged them. On the next day Peter went away with them, and some brethren from Joppa accompanied him.”(Acts 10:21-23 NKJV)
(Peter preaching at Cornelius’ house)

Peter Goes To Joppa.

So Peter went off to Joppa, and look what happened…

“Then Peter opened his mouth and said: ‘In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality.'” (Acts 10:34 NKJV)
He then proceeded to preach the gospel to the packed house.  Barely two minutes into his sermon the Holy Spirit fell on all the Gentiles who were gathered and they spoke in tongues, just like the Jews did on the day of Pentecost!  He didnt even have an altar call!
“And those of the circumcision {the Jews} who believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also. For they heard them speak with tongues and magnify God…” (Acts 10:45-46 NKJV)
Peter had come with six others to the centurion’s home.  They were flabbergasted by what transpired!  God was beginning His campaign to save the Gentiles!  HALLELUJAH!
You see, the Jewish people thought that Messiah was only for them.  They didn’t understand that “God so loved the WORLD!”  Not yet anyway.
(Peter before the council in Jerusalem)
Dispute In Jerusalem.
A full 15 years later the next chapter records that Peter was called on the carpet about this event.  “No small dispute” was going on in Jerusalem over whether or not the Gentiles should be under law and be circumcised now that God was saving them, too.”
This means they were having quite an argument!  Peter began to recount the events of that day to all the assembly.  At the end of his narrative, here is what they concluded:
“When they heard these things they became silent; and they glorified God, saying, ‘Then God has also granted to the Gentiles REPENTANCE TO LIFE.’” (Acts 11:18 NKJV)
True Repentance.
Go back and read Peter’s original sermon in chapter 10.  Was the word, “REPENTANCE” used anywhere?…..At any time?…..NO?  That’s because HE NEVER SAID IT!  Yet, obviously, EVERYONE in the house that day got saved!  They all had a “Metanóia” experience; a “Change of mind.”  They all repented and were baptized in the Holy Spirit.  And the Jewish council called it what?  REPENTANCE TO LIFE!
(Everyone present in Cornelius’ house got saved)
Holy Spirit Hug.
How did Peter and his company know the Gentiles got saved?  The exact same sign happened to them as came upon the Jews when the Holy Spirit fell that first Pentecost:  THEY SPOKE IN TONGUES!
The Holy Spirit fell almost before Peter got the following words out of his mouth:
“To Him {Jesus} all the prophets witness that, through His name, whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins.” Acts 10:43
Illuminating Greek.
The part of the story where it says, the Holy Spirit “FELL,” is the same Greek word used for “fell: Epipípto,” as in the story of the Prodigal returning home and His Father “Fell” on his neck.  HE EMBRACED HIM;  gave him a big hug!  That’s what The Holy Spirit did:  Gave these new believers A GREAT BIG HUG!
So, Church, just because you hear preaching about repentance doesn’t mean that repentance is going on.  In fact when people hear THE REAL GOSPEL being preached, repentance/metanóia is going on continually.  Many people receive quietly, but their minds are being changed by God when they hear the truth. THEY CHANGE THEIR MINDS ABOUT HOW GOD SEES THEM!
Believe Right, Live Right.
To the extent that you don’t hear, don’t understand and don’t believe the truth about God, to that extent you are in pain, fear or bondage. To that extent you don’t get your miracle, you don’t get healed, you don’t get your breakthrough. Right teaching leads to right believing.
Believe wrong, live wrong.  BUT……BELIEVE RIGHT and you will LIVE RIGHT!

True repentance comes from hearing the truth and believing right.  That’s what will bring it about.  Your blessings will be obvious for all to see and they will glorify God!

That is true repentance to life!

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