Intrinsic to the concept of Christianity is change.
• Christianity is all about Jesus and Jesus is all about change.
• Jesus is the only one who’s qualified to change people because He never changes. Another human being can’t truly change you since they need to focus on changing themselves. But Jesus doesn’t have that problem.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
The problem is that we have Christians who aren’t changing. Our definition of change is faulty. What if we change the way we change?
Luke 24:36-53 NKJV
Now as they said these things, Jesus Himself stood In the midst of them, and said to them, “Peace to you.” But they were terrified and frightened, and supposed they had seen a spirit. And He said to them, “Why are you troubled? And why do doubts arise in your hearts? Behold My hands and My feet, that it is I Myself. Handle Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have.” When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His feet. But while they still did not believe for joy, and marveled, He said to them, “Have you any food here?” So they gave him a piece of a broiled fish and some honeycomb. And He took it and ate in their presence. Then He said to them, “These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.” And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures. Then He said to them, “Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day, and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And you are witnesses of these things. Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high.” And He led them out as far as Bethany, and He lifted up His hands and blessed them. Now it came to pass, while He blessed them, that He was parted from them and carried up into heaven. And they worshiped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple praising and blessing God. Amen.
• Good news: with our glorified bodies, we can eat!
• The Holy Spirit has to open your understanding.
• Repentance and Remission: these two words exclusively belong to the church.
There’s this pattern: the more you obsess with changing, the less you change. This is the problem with change.
• Within yourself, you have no power to change or transform.
God thinks of change in terms of repentance and remission. The first word Jesus used in the beginning of His ministry was, “Repent!”
• People think repent means just to do a 180-degree turn.
• Do you think that the greatest communicator of all time chose to open with, “Change! Just change already!” ?
— This is actually not what the ancient Jews heard. What they heard Jesus say was, “Hey! Look again! I’m here now.”
— The ancient Jews got calloused because every so often there would be someone who popped up claiming to be the Messiah. When Jesus came, He had to tell them to look again.
— We need to look again at Jesus.
• We think it means remorse.
• Condemnation is the greatest killer on the planet.
• Remorse is not repentance.
• Realize that you have a problem and that the solution is Jesus.
• Realization is a gift from the Holy Spirit.
• Not turning—returning.
— There is no power in just turning from.
• Repentance is not possible until Jesus is preached.
Romans 2:4 NKJV
Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?
[Judah demonstrated using microphone and the lights on the stage. You could have someone who loves the microphone, really wants it, and Christians just tell him, “Don’t touch the microphone!” He’s trying to justify it and the Christians tell him that if he touches the microphone, they wouldn’t accept him into their community. So he doesn’t touch it. But it’s nothing has really changed. He still wants it. But he just wants friends. He wants community and he fears they wouldn’t accept him. But when the temptation gets too much and he touches the microphone then he gets condemnation and a whole slew of problems. What then? Instead of preaching against the things that are bad, we should shine the light on Jesus. Instead of telling him don’t touch the microphone, we should tell him, “You could touch the microphone but then you’ll miss out on what’s behind you if you turn around.” Tell him that if he turns around, he gets the light which is way better than what the microphone would give you. There’s beauty, there’s light, and there’s majesty. The microphone leaves you empty and never satisfies but the light (Jesus) never leaves you empty.]
• Repentance is when you realize that there’s more to life than this and you fill the hole in your soul.
• We need to tell people that there’s something better to turn to.
• It’s forgiveness.
• It’s not temporary relief and it’s not regrouping.
Psalm 103:12 NKJV
As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us.
• It’s not a cover-up.
• Jesus died for your past, present, and future sins. There’s no, “He loves me. He loves me not.” Don’t doubt His love.
• Quit living like you’re in close proximity to your sins.
• Jesus didn’t die for me. He died as me.
Colossians 3:3 NKJV
For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
• When God sees you, he sees his Son.
• Jesus died once and for all and sat at the right hand of the Father. He sat because it is done.
Proverbs 24:16 NKJV
For a righteous man may fall seven times And rise again, But the wicked shall fall by calamity.
• A righteous man falls and gets back up again.
• We need righteous followers of Jesus to get back up and do what God has called us to do.
Romans 8:1 NKJV
There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.
• Condemnation is not helping anyone.
• We tend to listen to gospel of sin more than the Gospel of Jesus.
• You are who you are in Christ Jesus.