Posts Tagged ‘repentance’

Vital Steps to a Radiant Faith-Repentance and Baptism

May 31st, 2023 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – In the Year to Shine, today’s Vital Steps to a Radiant Faith are repentance and baptism.

This was the message that Peter shared with the crowd on Pentecost in Acts chapter 2.

He centered his message on Jesus, explained His death and resurrection, and spoke of His identity as Lord and Messiah.

This generated the question from the crowd, “What shall we do?”

That is when Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins.”

This is the message for anyone who is longing for a fresh start in God’s grace. Freedom and forgiveness are offered for anyone who changes the course of their lives to follow Jesus as Lord and Savior.

About 3,000 people embraced that message during Pentecost and were added to the church.

Repentance and Baptism are Vital Steps to a Radiant Faith that makes a difference in our world.

John Shirk

Key Element for Thriving Relationships-Kindness

June 27th, 2022 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Key Element for Thriving Relationships is Kindness.

This quality is identified in the fruit of the Spirit, showing tender concern for others. Kindness causes us to take notice of the person who feels forgotten or to be gentle with the person who feels anxiety.

Kindness is refreshing for someone who is beaten down by harsh words and discouraging influences.

Kindness is life-changing for someone who recognizes their need for God’s grace. Romans 2:4 tells us that the kindness of God leads us to repentance.

Because of God’s kindness toward us, we can be a voice of kindness and refreshment for others. Ephesians 4:32 says, “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”

Kindness is a key element for thriving relationships that honor God.

John Shirk

Faith Building Verse-2 Chronicles 7:14

May 9th, 2022 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Faith-Building Verse is Second Chronicles 7:14.

The LORD says, “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

This verse was specifically focusing on the nation of Israel. God would respond to the earnest prayers of His people to bring an end to droughts and plagues in their land. This verse also has relevance for believers today.

Just as humility, prayer, and repentance were the pathways to healing for the Israelites, so we can experience God’s forgiveness today by trusting in the One gift that God has provided for our redemption. That gift is Jesus. He came to offer us forgiveness and a place of belonging in His family through faith in His name.

This Faith-Building Verse inspires us to humility, prayer, and repentance to follow Jesus in the Year of Relationship.

John Shirk

Key Element for Thriving Relationships-Gentle Instruction

January 17th, 2022 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Key Element for Thriving Relationships is Gentle Instruction.

From one church leader to another, Paul the Apostle wrote in Second Timothy 2:25, “Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.”

When we take a stand for Jesus publicly, there will be times of opposition. That will be a test to our character, and an opportunity to display the love of Jesus. Paul encouraged Timothy to avoid foolish and stupid arguments, to be kind to everyone, able to teach, and not resentful. That is what we can do to keep the conversation going with those who have yet to believe in Jesus.

Gentle Instruction is a key element for thriving relationships that honor God.

John Shirk

20/20 Insight-Snow

February 12th, 2020 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – In the Year of Vision, today’s 20/20 Insight focuses on a spiritual metaphor of snow.

It’s found in Isaiah 1:18, where the LORD says, 

“Come now, let us settle the matter. Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.”

Just as a blanket of snow covers the ground, so the blood of Jesus has the power to cover our sins. His grace is able to make our hearts pure again. 

Repentance is the pathway to forgiveness. That is the picture of turning around from going in the wrong direction to get back on track with God. To a nation whose hands were full of blood, God said, “Take your evil deeds out of my sight; stop doing wrong. Learn to do right; seek justice.” 

In the New Testament, Jesus said, “Repent and believe the good news!”

Focusing on the grace of God to cleanse us from sin gives us greater clarity for living out the Christian life.

John Shirk

Red Letter Wisdom-Cure for Our Sinful Condition

May 23rd, 2019 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Wisdom from the Red Letters is found in Luke 5:31.

Jesus was responding to a question from the Pharisees, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?”

Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”

Jesus spent time with people who had sinful reputations because He loved them. He sought to save them from their sins and change their eternal destiny from death to life. In reality, when He came to the world, He came to a situation where there was no one who always does right and never sins. That is the way the world is today too. That means, Jesus came for us in our sinful condition, not to condemn us, but to redeem us and be in relationship with us.

The words of Jesus inspire us to find the cure for our sinful condition in God’s amazing grace in the Year of Redemption.

John Shirk

Freedom Phrase-New Attitude Of The Mind

March 22nd, 2019 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – In the Year of Redemption, today’s Freedom Phrase is based on Ephesians 4:22 and 23.

“You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires, to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.”

The Gospel presents us with a new way of thinking that flows out of a renewed mind. The word “Repentance” means to change one’s mind. We were going in the wrong direction, but the grace of God tapped us on the shoulder, captured our attention, and changed our mind to follow Jesus.

A renewed mind will transform our attitude to be kind and compassionate, forgiving, and generous. God’s grace moves us to study the mind of Christ, so that we can learn to think more like Him.

Through Jesus, we are set free to a new way of thinking that is transformed by the attitude of Christ.

John Shirk

Eye On Integrity-Returning to God

September 8th, 2018 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Eye on Integrity is based on Hosea 6:1.

“Come, let us return to the LORD. He has torn us to pieces but he will heal us; he has injured us but he will bind up our wounds.”

In the Old Testament, the Israelites were prone to wandering from God. They were similar to many of us today. It is interesting that Jesus describes Himself as the Good Shepherd, and His followers as sheep. Sheep are prone to wandering without a shepherd to direct them.

When the Israelites wandered, they would experience the Lord’s discipline, because the Lord loved them. It’s the same way when we wander away from Him. In His love, God disciplines us for our good so that we might share in His holiness. His discipline is meant to get our attention so that we might correct our course and return to Him.

He is ready to welcome us with open arms.

Returning to God through His discipline is a virtue to embrace for our lives in the Year of Integrity.

John Shirk

Relationship Building Principle-Repentance

October 14th, 2015 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Relationship-Building Principle comes from Jonah 3:8 through 10.

After Jonah preached to the huge city of Nineveh, the people responded with prayer and repentance.

The king and his nobles said, “Let people and animals be covered with sackcloth. Let everyone call urgently on God. Let them give up their evil ways and their violence. Who knows? God may yet relent and with compassion turn from his fierce anger so that we will not perish.” When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he relented and did not bring on them the destruction he had threatened.”

Whenever we give up sinful practices and turn toward God, we make a decision for life. In the case of Nineveh, one of the specific sins that they committed to give up was violence. Along with violence in a society, there is the presence of hatred for others, selfish ambition, envy, inconsideration for people and general disrespect for human life. Turning to God closes the door on these destructive attitudes and opens the door for His love to take root in our heart. This leads to a change of attitude that seeks to do good for our neighbors. Nineveh was a civilization that made a choice for life in the nick of time.

Prayer and Repentance are vital relationship-building principles to take to heart in the Year of Connection.

John Shirk

Moment Of Celebration-Salvation and Strength

January 28th, 2014 No comments

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Moment of Celebration reflects on the power of God to save us and be our source of strength.

In Isaiah 30:15, this is what the Sovereign LORD says, “In repentance and rest is your salvation; in quietness and trust is your strength.”

Repentance is a turning point that acknowledges we have been going the wrong way and turn to Jesus for forgiveness and direction to follow His way.

Rest is a reliance on God’s grace to save us. We acknowledge that no amount of good deeds could ever outweigh our bad deeds to make us right with God. We do not have the ability to climb ourselves out of our debt of sin. But because of what Jesus did for us at the cross, we believe that He paid the price of our debt. And so, we depend on Jesus.

Quietness is a place of solitude at God’s throne of grace, convincing us that God is in control.

Trust is a place of confidence in the LORD even in times of trouble.

The power of God to save us and be our source of strength is a reason to be glad in the Year of Celebration.

John Shirk

Lesson of Faith-There Is A Cure For Heart Disease

October 17th, 2013 No comments

JOHN SHIRK-One of the foundational teachings of the Christian faith is the moral depravity of humanity. Apart from Christ’s influence, we are lost in sinful and selfish ways. Sin is at the heart of our problem.

Jeremiah 17:9 says “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?”

The heart is so deceptive that it is possible for us to deceive ourselves into thinking we are in a better condition than we really are.

The good news about Jesus is that He is our remedy of hope. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. We can be set free from guilt and experience forgiveness through the sacrifice of Jesus for us on the cross. What is incurable for man is possible with God.

Jesus says in Luke 5:31, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”  For the sickness of our sin, there is a cure, and his name is Jesus.

The heart of our problem and our remedy of hope is a lesson of faith worth remembering.