Preach Repentance

Preach Repentance

For some time now, we always have readings from the Acts of the Apostles that present us with what the Apostles are up to after the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We always see them giving accounts of the crucifixion, proclaiming the good news and repentance wherever they found themselves. 

In the gospels, we see Jesus Christ appearing to the disciples with his resurrected body and always greeting them in the same way: “Peace be with you”. It is worth noting that we cannot tell every single appearance of Jesus to his disciples with his resurrected body, but we can say that records show that he appeared to his disciples ten times. These appearances did not happen on the same day but several days before his ascension. 

Jesus said in John 2:19, “‘Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.’ Foretelling his death and resurrection on the third day. He shows himself to some of his disciples in the gospel this morning while the disciples were, if you like, reminiscing about the institution of the Last Supper. Jesus appears to them, but they become startled and think he is a ghost. Jesus shows them his hands and feet and asks them to touch them to clear their minds of all doubts. His signature heart-warming greeting to them was ‘peace be with you’. Jesus went on to ask for food, which they gave him and ate in front of them. The disciples were overjoyed because, at this point, they had all the proof that Jesus was still alive, as he said. 

His appearance to his disciples was to give them hope and clear their minds of all fear and unbelief so that they would know that what was said about him by the prophets in the scripture had been fulfilled. 

My dear Christian friends, we must proclaim the message of the cross because our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, did not remain in the tomb. He has resurrected, and through his resurrection, humanity will receive salvation. God glorified our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ through the resurrection; he was handed over and disowned in the presence of Pilate even when Pilate had decided to release him. Jesus had not done anything wrong; he was a holy and just man, which his accusers knew, yet they chose a murderer and rejected a just and Holy man. All this happened so that the scriptures would be fulfilled and humankind could be saved. The prince of life was killed, but God raised him from the dead. 

We must all be encouraged that the difficulties and challenges we go through as Christians help us to grow in the Lord so that at his own appointed time, we, too, will be glorified. We may think that all is dead, so all hope is lost. Just as God raised Jesus from the dead, he will also bring to life everything that may seem dead in our lives. 

Jesus, when he appeared to the disciples, opened their minds to understand scripture, and it must be our prayer that our minds be opened to scripture to gain understanding, read them constantly, and live by them so that we can proclaim it to the world. We have a duty as Christians to preach repentance so that forgiveness of sins would be given through the resurrection power of Christ. We are being admonished to move away from anything ungodly, repent of our sins, and turn to God, and our sins will be forgiven. 

Jesus Christ went through all the pain and humiliation so that today we can “…approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16). The sacrifice of Jesus Christ can take away the sins of each one of us. No one is left out of the grace; therefore, let us give him a place in our lives.

The epistle moves us to keep the commandments of God because that portrays knowledge of God and that we cannot say we know God when we fail to obey his commandments. Everyone who claims to know God and fails to keep His commandments is a liar because he refuses to admit the truth. 

Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ did not remain in the tomb. He is risen; therefore, we must take advantage of the grace that he has given us through his death and resurrection. Let us keep his commandments, proclaim the message of the cross and repentance of sin so that all will receive the Lord’s salvation.

Fr. Josiah Myles Abadoo SSC