Locusts & Armies, 2

As a parent and a pastor, the topic of sin is frequently discussed. Needless to say, there is nothing enjoyable about confronting sin in our lives, or anyone else’s for that matter. It certainly is not a popular subject that draws crowds of people and packs out the pews of churches. Why is that? Because we are lovers of ourselves, and we instinctively feel uncomfortable with the convicting truths of Scripture. Apart from the transforming work of the Spirit, we are by nature enslaved to our passions. Our flesh lives in opposition to the idea of genuine repentance and submission to God’s authority. The Apostle Paul speaks of our continued battle against the flesh throughout his epistles (Romans 7; Colossians 3; Ephesians 6; etc.). This reality is not difficult to recognize in our own lives. Yes, sin is a problem we all must address but so is a passive approach to repentance. Scripture clearly warns us about the consequences of a habitual life of sin (Rom 6:23; 1 Jn 3), which is clearly demonstrated throughout the book of Revelation. By the time we come to the end of chapter 9, the extreme judgments that are poured out upon the world are still not enough to convince men of their need to repent (9:20-21). Scripture often speaks of repentance as evidencing a change of heart, not simply a change of behavior. True heartfelt repentance sets out to take up arms, as it were, against sin, appropriating the armor of God (Eph 6) and “mortifying the flesh” (Rom 8:13, Col 3:5). Passive “gut-felt” repentance—that which is emotionally driven by guilt or fear—confesses sin but with a quiet expectation that the sin in question will be committed again in the near future. This kind of repentance is superficial and hypocritical. We may feel bad about our sin, but we fail to “put to death” or “put off” this besetting sin. Beware of this passive view of confession. It is more prevalent than we might realize. Unlike the unrepentant man of Revelation 9, wage war against your sin. Allow John’s vivid description of God’s judgments to enhance your view of sin and sober your understanding of repentance. —Pastor Nate

Sunday at Liberty

9AM: How to Study the Bible–Interpreting the Law

10AM: Pastor Rory Martin–Locusts & Armies, 2–Revelation 9:13-21 (sermon notes)

11:45AM: Potluck 

12:30PM: Members’ Meeting

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