A pastor asked a group of children in Sunday School class,“Why do you love God?”
He received a variety of answers, but the one he liked best was,
“I don’t know, Sir, I guess it just runs in our family.”
That is a cute adorable answer from a child and it brings a smile to my face, but I wonder if that is the only reason our children say they are “Christian”.
In Sunday School we teach our children the story of Christmas and Easter. We tell them that Jesus loves them and they should believe in Him. If they believe, they will be saved.
This is all true, but are we teaching them about true repentance?
What is the first word of the gospel?
John the Baptist preaching about Jesus’ coming...
(Matt.3:2) “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!”
The beginning of Jesus’ ministry…
(Matt.4:17) “From that time Jesus began to preach and to say,“Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
(Matt. 9:13) “For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.”
On the Day of Pentecost when all of those, who were expectantly waiting in one accord, were filled with the Holy Ghost, it caused great commotion and confusion in the crowd of people outside. Peter being filled with the Holy Spirit and the anointing began to preach Jesus to them.
(Acts 2:37-38) “Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?”
Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
Again, Peter preaching on another day to a different crowd…
(Acts 3:19) “Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord.”
I believe that ‘repent’ was the first word of the gospel. Sadly, we seldom hear it preached in churches today. The Gospel has been watered down, so as not to offend.
To be completely honest I’m not sure, in my fading memory, if my sons heard the complete gospel of repentance while growing up in church 30-45 years ago.
Is this why so many of our children who were raised in church leave the faith when they start making life choices? Was their faith anchored through repentance, or just a mental acceptance of what they agreed to believe at that time?
Only the convicting power of the Holy Spirit can bring the unbeliever to repentance. The Spirit’s irresistible power draws him to the Master, changing his mind, attitude and behavior instantly, for all eternity!
2 Cor. 5:17 “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”
Love and Prayers,
Can you imagine the excitement and joy that Jesus’ followers felt when they realized that Jesus was not dead, but alive? One by one they believed, as others who had seen Him shared their stories.
Two of His followers who were walking on the road to Emmaus actually experienced Jesus joining them for the walk.
Luke 25:15 “So it was, while they conversed and reasoned, that Jesus Himself drew near and went with them.”
Wow! How exciting that must have been! But they didn’t know that it was Jesus. They didn’t recognize Him. They still believed He was dead.
Verse 16- “But their eyes were restrained, so that they did not know Him.”
Our unsaved loved ones are in this condition!
Cor. 4:4 “Whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.”
Luke 25:31- “Then their eyes were opened and they knew Him.”
Verse 32- “And they said one to another, Did not our hearts burn within us while He talked with us on the road, and while He opened the Scriptures to us?”
We need to pray that our kids’ eyes will be opened so that they can see Jesus who is walking beside them.
And pray that the Holy Spirit will burn within their hearts a remembrance of His Word that they perhaps learned as a child. If they did not have the teaching as a child, pray that the Word will be exposed to them from sources all around them.
And every time they hear a witness of Jesus Christ, it will burn in their hearts, which will put them under such strong conviction that they have to say “Yes” to the Holy Spirit.
Love and Prayers,
Jesus, gave His life for our sins. He was beaten beyond recognition and then crucified on the cross. He gave His life as our sacrifice so that we can have eternal life in Heaven.
God sent His son, they called Him Jesus
He came to love, to heal and forgive.
He lived and died to buy my pardon,
An empty grave is there to prove my Jesus lives.
The grave could not hold Him. He had power over death and rose again on the third day. We celebrate Easter, the day of new life, the day of resurrection, the day of eternal hope!
Jesus is risen!
Jesus is alive!
Celebrate! Shout for joy! Jesus did not stay in the grave, but He is alive! Easter is our promise of eternal life!
May you have a blessed Easter!
Love and Prayers,