Markers of genuine repentance

1 Now at that same time there were some present who were reporting to Him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. 2 And Jesus answered and said to them, “Do you think that these Galileans were greater sinners than all other Galileans because they suffered these things? 3 I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. ”Luke 13:1-5 (LSB) Read verses 4 & 5 on the site.

On social media it is always surprising to me how often I encounter discussions supposedly between Christians that reveal that one or more of those involved are clueless about the relationship of the Christian faith and repentance. For instance, on more than one occasion I have been involved in discussions in which the initiators were proclaiming that it is perfectly fine for Christians to use profanity and those who call them on it are being hypocritical and self-righteous….

I have been teaching for quite a while that the genuine believer is regenerate, a new creation, whom God is in the process of sanctifying. Our humility must come to predominate our pride. The prideful person is self-focused while the humble person is not. So how do you think I responded?

What are the motives for using coarse or vulgar language? There are many, but not one of them will cause a believer to edify others or glorify God. In fact, in the Bible, in every mention of coarse language, casts it as part of sin or sinful behavior itself. What was Isaiah’s lament when he saw the Lord high and lifted up?

1 In the year of King Uzziah’s death I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lifted up, with the train of His robe filling the temple. 2 Seraphim stood above Him, each having six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. 3 And one called out to another and said, “Holy, Holy, Holy, is Yahweh of hosts; The whole earth is full of His glory.” 4 And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called out, while the house of God was filling with smoke. 5 Then I said, “Woe is me, for I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, And I live among a people of unclean lips; For my eyes have seen the King, Yahweh of hosts.” 6 Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a burning coal in his hand, which he had taken from the altar with tongs. 7 And he touched my mouth with it and said, “Behold, this has touched your lips; and your iniquity is taken away, and your sin is atoned for.” Isaiah 6:1-7 (LSB) 

Being in the presence of God and thereby being exposed to His Holiness and Glory, caused Isaiah to see his own sin clearly. What was it? What comes from the mouth reflects what is in the heart. If coarse or unclean language commonly comes from our mouths, then bitterness is present in our hearts. We have become defiled by our pride, which has caused us to become resentful and bitter. When we are squeezed by God then out comes what is really inside. Isaiah’s sin of having unclean lips was rooted in the fact that he was full of pride and not humility. He was a man of unclean lips, but when he became broken before God, his pride was shattered and God forgave, cleansed, and used him. View article →

Reposted from January 2016