Times of refreshing sure sounds good, doesn’t it?
I think it sounds so good that everyone would want the refreshing available? But the sad truth is even many people who call themselves Christians do not personally know the biblical refreshing available? So how can we personally know and experience times of refreshing? We need to take a look at the word repentance.
Times of refreshing begins at the cross
Jesus said..And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to Myself.” John 12:32
If man’s sin was responsible for the crucifying of Jesus then our sin was responsible for it. Every man has had a hand in that crime. The greatest crime in human history. And when we understand what happened on the cross and are pierced in our hearts a reaction is required.
“Men and brethren what shall we do? then Peter said Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Acts 2:37,38
The experience of recognizing what Jesus did on that cross and why He was placed there requires a reaction. And that reaction is repentance.
The original word meant an afterthought, a second thought. In other words, a second thought revealing the first thought was wrong; and so the word came to mean a change of mind; but, if a person is honest a change of mind demands a change of action.
Times of refrehsing follows repentance
When we turn to Jesus in faith we are turning from the way we lived to follow Jesus. To apply His Word to our lives. When true repentance takes place I no longer want to be the boss I also no longer want to live according to the ways of the world which are clearly against God’s way.
Today there is a serious problem with people calling themselves Christians and Christ followers but maintaining approved behavior culture promotes as normal. While true repentance demands to turn from this way to obedience to God’s way.
Repentance affects our past
As our passage says ..so that your sins will be forgiven.
When Jesus died on the cross for our sins God made the way of forgiveness available. Our repentance happens when you and I agree with God that we have sinned and need to be forgiven of our sins. Repentance affects our past because we are turning from our former life that was estranged from God and returning our hearts and lives back to God.
No longer are you estranged from God you now live in peace with God and you have the peace of God and this is where refreshing engages.
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Repentance changes our future
With true repentance comes the gift of the Holy Spirit. When we repent we are turning from our old ways but how are we going to have the power to turn from our old ways and to walk in the new ways that Jesus has for us? How are we to avoid the same mistakes that we just asked forgiveness for? How are we going to get the power to live in victory over the old ways?
As our passage says ..you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit
With true repentance comes forgiveness of the past sins and power to avoid future sins. The Holy Spirit provides a power that is not ours, it comes from God and in that power, we can win the battles we never thought to win, and resist the things which by ourselves we would have been powerless to resist.
Here is the good news you can live out this refreshing life every day with the help of the Holy Spirit.
Isn’t it a shame when people cringe at the word repentance and when pastors remove the word repentance when it is actually a wonderful word explaining to people that action we must take to live the life of refreshing and renewal in the Holy Spirit.
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