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Sermons about Repentence
Sometimes those who feel victimized by God ask through their tears in pastors’ offices: “Did I do something to deserve this?” If you have ever thought this, memorize this text, because Jesus says it twice: “I tell you no!”
Saul fears men rather than God. Hot on the heels of the victory God gave him, Saul allows his fear of what he's confronted with to cause him to sin and offer a sacrifice to God to appease the people rather than waiting for Samuel to arrive and do it. When confronted by Samuel, Saul defends himself rather than repent, then makes excuses, and finally repents, but for his own reasons.
Why "As You Are" Can't Stay that Way
As we have seen, great persecution broke out against the early Church in Jerusalem. The sorrow and anguish of that caused the Church to scatter. One of the people who left Jerusalem was Philip, and as he was probably headed home he preached the word and many got saved in Samaria. There was great joy in Samaria as the Church grew. God brought blessing out of difficulty and lives were being changed. So, what do you expect happens next? Satan counter-attacks and brings a guy named Simon “into” the Church I. Luke gives us the back story on Simon the Magician A. He previously practiced magic in the city (Acts 8:9) 1. He amazed the people of Samaria 2. He was renowned and proclaimed himself as great B. The people thought a lot of him 1. They all paid attention to him – least to the greatest (Acts 8:10) a. They believed he was connected to God b. He was a “Great Power” 2. They paid attention to him (Acts 8:11) a. Because of his magic b. For a long time he had amazed them C. Pride keeps us from true repentance and salvation (James 4:6-10; Luke 18:9-14) II. Change comes to the way things had been in Samaria A. People believed the message Philip was preaching (Acts 8:12) 1. About the kingdom of God 2. About the name of Jesus Christ B. Men and women were being baptized III. Even Simon got “saved” (Acts 8:13) A. Simon believed B. Simon got baptized C. Simon continued with Philip D. He was amazed by the things he saw 1. Signs 2. Great miracles IV. The apostles heard about what was going on in Samaria A. They heard Samaritans were receiving the word of God (Acts 8:14) B. Peter and John came to see and get involved C. They prayed for the new believers to receive the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:15, 16) 1. He had not come on them yet 2. They had been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus (I Cor. 1:21, 22; 12:13) D. They laid their hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:17) Things could not be better in the Samaritan Church, right? Regular folks and even prominent men like Simon were being saved. The church was growing. Peter and John witnessed that what was going on was genuine and that the Spirit had indeed come upon the Samaritan Church and that Samaritan’s could be saved and equals in the kingdom of God.
Like the human body is made to need water, so our spirits are made to need God. We do great harm to ourselves when we seek to fulfill our need for living water by digging broken cisterns which can never satisfy. Pastor Ron leads the listener through a list of "broken cisterns" that we use as substitutes for the manifest presence of Christ.
If we desire the manifest presence of Christ in revival, it begins with each of us coming back to Christ by recognizing how we have strayed, remembering where we were when we were close to Christ, repenting of all known sin, and returning to those things that keep us in step with the Holy Spirit.
When we face overwhelming challenges and problems the FIRST place to turn is to God in prayer. Revival is the only real answer to society's problems, and we cooperate with the Spirit of God in bringing revival as we seek the face of God in prayer.
When God shows up in power and might that is revival. When that happens His presence is unmistakable, worship is irresistible, progress is undeniable, change is attainable and God's love is abundantly recognizable.
In this message Pastor Ron begins a four week series calling the people of God to cry out to God to send revival, which is the only cure for our nation's ills. Revival is the extraordinary movement of the Holy Spirit in the lives of God's people yeilding extraordinary results.