Walk with me
In the Gospel of Luke, chapter 13, some people came to Jesuss and told him about Galileans whose blood Pilaate had mixed with their sacrifices. They were going to offer a sacrifice and they were slaughtered by the hands of evil men. Jesus reminds them that they were not worse sinners than any others. What happened to them was a result of evil that was done to them. Jesus let's them know that if they don't repent, they too will perish.
Then Jesus reminds them about a tower in Siloam that fell and killed eighteen people. A natural disaster that took thier lives too soon. They also were not more guilty than others. Jesus takes one more chance to remind them that unless they repent, they too will perish.
Then Jesus tells a story...
6 Then he told this parable: “A man had a fig tree growing in his vineyard, and he went to look for fruit on it but did not find any. 7 So he said to the man who took care of the vineyard, ‘For three years now I’ve been coming to look for fruit on this fig tree and haven’t found any. Cut it down! Why should it use up the soil?’
8 “‘Sir,’ the man replied, ‘leave it alone for one more year, and I’ll dig around it and fertilize it. 9 If it bears fruit next year, fine! If not, then cut it down.’” -Luke 13:6-9
The owner is regarded as representing God the Father, who had a fig tree planted in his vineyard and came seeking fruit. The parable reflects Jesus offering a chance for repentance and forgiveness of sin, showing his grace toward his believers.
We teach kids to say that they are sorry when they don't play nice. We apologize when we snap at others. When it comes to repentance of our sins before God, we may not be as quick to act.
True repentance comes when we desire to live lives worthy of the grace and mercy of our Savior. Our gratitude for Jesus' sacrifice on the cross must prompt us to repent of anything that is contrary to His holiness.
Here is what biblical repentance looks like.
REPENTANCE IS MORE THAN "SORRY."
Being sorry indicates a temporary clearing of the conscience. We can be "sorry" about a lot of things, but only godly sorrow leads to a change of heart. The outward signs of godly sorrow include a diligence to live differently, a holly fear of the Lord, and a desire for forgiveness.
REPENTANCE MOURNS OVER SIN AND SHAME
In our lives, when the conviction of the Holy Spirit comes, our hearts will be grieved over our sin. In our brokenness before God, we will be restored.
REPENTANCE IS FUELED BY GOD'S LOVING-KINDNESS
When repentance starts to feel like an obligation more than a freedom, we needd to remember the incredible goodness of our heavenly Father. Because of His patience with us, we are motivated to repent of anything that goes against His unmerited kindness towards uss.
REPENTANCE IS URGENT
Sometimes, it is easy to take the Lord's mercy for granted. We know that Jesus' work on the cross covered our sin, so we may be tempted to be complacent in repenetance. Let us be purposeful in acknowledging our sin with urgency and resolve. Confeess our sins, knowing he is faithful and just to forgive.
UNLESS YOU REPENT... YOU WILL PERISH
Maybe you, or someone you know seems to over-apologize. We have all met people who say that they are "sorry" when it isn't entirely their fault. Someone will bump into them, and they will say, "sorry." Someone will make a reasonable request and they will say, "sorry." If this sounds familiar to you, you are not alone.
Saying "sorry" too much is common. However, over apologizing can undermine your self-worth and your capacity to live a full life. If you find yourself being "sorry" too much, you need to develop strategies to help you stop. Don't be... SO SORRY!
Common traits of people who are "so sorry."
They are compassionate: Many people who struggle care a lot about the feelings and preferences of others. Because they are like this, they find themselves apologizing for things even when they have done nothing wrong.
They are submissive in relationships: Often people who struggle give the other person the message that they feel like it is wrong to have their own thoughts or needs.
They are agreeable: When people care about keeping the peace and avoiding conflict they struggle and can be more likely to say "sorry" more than is needed. They would rather apologize than instigate a fight.
They lack confidence in their judgement: Many who struggle are not confident that what they are doing or saying is right. They often just assume that they are in the wrong.
They come from a strict background: If one has spent their childhood in fear of discipline this can cause them to struggle to be trigger-happy with their apologies.
They have anxiety: When people struggle with anxiety, they can be sensitive to the idea of a situation or relationship going wrong. As a result, they may struggle and apologize a disproportionate amount.
WAYS TO BE HEALTHY:
Simple things to try so you don't have to be "so sorry."
Try to pause before you apologize: Before you apologize ask, "Have I done something wrong?" If not, don't say "sorry."
Try to express compassion differently: Instead of apologizing say something to show compassion like, "I know this is difficult."
Try to know what your triggers are: Brainstorm what makes you want to apologize. Think of something you can say instead and try to focus on eliminating "sorry" from that context.
Try to Phrase questions carefully: Don't say "sorry" when you just need clarification. Say something like, "Can you please help me understand this better?"
Try to turn apologies into gratitude: Think of a way to rephrase it into a statement of gratitude. Say something like, "I am grateful you helped me out!", instead of saying, "I am sorry you had to go and pick up my son." This focuses your mind on positivity and thankfulness.
This is something that I struggle with at times. This post contains some information and tips that I am currently working through in my own journey towards increased health. I owe a lot of thanks to many resources that have been helpful to me and may be for you as well.
He replied, “Go tell that fox, ‘I will keep on driving out demons and healing people today and tomorrow, and on the third day I will reach my goal.’
-Luke 13:32 (NIV)
As Jesus was making his way to Jerusalem someone asked him if only a few are going to be saved. The one who asks is wondering if many people are going to find healing and salvation. Jesus responds to those with him by charging them to strive, to fight, to struggle, to contend with adversity to enter through the narrow door. Many people with try but will not be successful. They will not know the owner of the house and the door will be closed. While they may plead and knock, the door will remain closed because they are unknown to the owner. (Luke 13:22-27)
Jesus then gives a brief description of the place that these people will inhabit which includes weeping and gnashing of teeth. They will not inhabit the Kingdom of God. Other people, from all different locations, will come and they will take their places at the feast in the kingdom of God. (Luke 13:28-30)
What is the kingdom of God? The kingdom of God is the rule of an eternal, sovereign God over the universe. More specifically, it is a spiritual rule over the hearts and lives of those who willingly submit to God's authority. Those who defy God's authority and refuse to submit to Him are not part of the kingdom of God. Those who acknowledge the lordship of Christ and gladly surrender to God's rule in their hearts are part of the kingdom of God. The kingdom of God is spiritual and is not of this world.
It is at this time when some Pharisees approached Jesus. They came to warn him that he needs to leave. Herod Antipas is interested in killing Jesus. We are unsure of the motive of the Pharisees. It is possible that they are genuinely concerned for the life of Jesus, and they want to warn him so that he won't be harmed. It is also possible that they were threatened themselves. They may not have wanted Jesus to stay as it may have imposed on their ability to be "in charge". In either case Jesus is warned of the imminent danger posed by Herod. (Luke 13:31)
I am fascinated by the response of Christ!
He replied, “Go tell that fox, ‘I will keep on driving out demons and healing people today and tomorrow, and on the third day I will reach my goal.’ -Luke 13:32
This is a term of contempt. Jesus expresses an attitude of authority and scorn towards the persecution and adversity of which he is warned. He has a message for the opposition. He will keep freeing and healing people today. He plans to free and heal people tomorrow. On the third day, he will be finished!
Later, Jesus laments and weeps those he loves who kill the prophets and stone the messengers. He longs gather all his children together and protect them from adversity, but many are unwilling. Those who are unwilling to receive his healing and freedom are reminded that they will not see him again until he returns for his Church. (Luke 13:33-35)
The question was asked of Jesus if only a few would find freedom and healing. With sadness Jesus reminded the people that this would in fact be the case. Not because of his desire but because of the unwillingness of many hearts.
Today Jesus brings freedom. Today Jesus heals.
Tomorrow Jesus brings freedom. Tomorrow Jesus heals.
On the third day it will be finished.
On the Cross of Jesus, he declares that it is finished! Jesus has reached his goal. It is the third day that he is resurrected. It is on the third day when he returns that we who have been raised to new life in Jesus will find our ultimate fulfillment of freedom and healing. Those who have been set free by the Jesus, while they may be few, are in fact free!
GO TELL THAT FOX
Go tell the adversary. Go tell the enemy. Go tell the devil. Go tell that fox!
GO TELL THAT FOX that in Christ you are made whole in spirit, soul and body and will be blameless at the coming of my Lord Jesus Christ.
GO TELL THAT FOX that you have learned the secret of being content whether you go satisfied or hungry.
GO TELL THAT FOX that you are a part of the body of Christ and no weapon formed against you will prosper.
GO TELL THAT FOX that you don’t have to be afraid; you God is with you, and he will strengthen you and hold you up.
GO TELL THAT FOX that you have been set free. The son has set you free, so you are free indeed.
And when you finish the race, you may be limping or crawling to the finish line but you will know that your work is done, and you will soon see your King face to face and say “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord” and you will know that your work is done because you will hear him say “well done my good and faithful servant”. The one who declared victory over adversity on the cross when He said “It is finished” will be the one who completed the work for you and rose to life on the third day that you may too be resurrected when your work on earth is done. Praise be to God who gives us victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!
GO TELL THAT FOX that you are not finished. The work of Jesus is finished. There is no persecution or adversity that will overcome you because you belong to the one who holds the keys to life and death, and while the enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy… Jesus came that you would have life. Life now… and life forever. It is no longer you, but Christ who lives in you. You are alive!