“The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!” Mark 1:15
Do you believe in Jesus? I hope so. I can still remember when I first believed. It’s been close to 30 years now, but I remember like it was yesterday. It seemed that all the weight on my shoulders was removed and I could feel the hands and arms of Jesus wrap around me in a loving embrace.
It was more than simply believing Jesus though. There are two verbs involved in the Gospel message. “Believe,” an action word that requires us to trust Jesus in our belief; however, the first verb is “repent.” An action word that requires us to turn away from sin or the things that separate us from God. To turn from sin and toward Jesus.
We can’t just make a declaration of belief in Jesus without following his command to repent. What do we believe in if repentance has no part of our faith? Are we following Jesus if we continue to walk the opposite direction of Christ?
God’s grace is a powerful thing but not something that we should take for granted. “What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?” Romans 6:1-2
God loves you. He loves you right where you are today. God loves you. He loves you enough to not leave you there. He will take you out of the darkness and bring into the light where there is no shame and no fear. Turn away from that which separates you from God and follow Jesus.
“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.” Romans 8:1-2
Capt. Mark Cyr is pastor of The Salvation Army, 911 E. Second St. Carson City. For information go to carsoncity.salvationarmy.org.