Jesus said a house divided can not stand. Where I am not aligned and conforming to the Fathers will, in thought, purpose and action, I am divided. I am not seeking His will but mine and the Father says this is sin. The only remedy for sin is repentance.
I think most of us know the definition of the word repent, but look at the difference between our English definition and the Greek.
- English: feel or express sincere regret or remorse about one's wrongdoing or sin.
- Greek: metanoeó from Acts 3:19 means: to change one's mind or purpose.
There is no repentance where there is no change. There might be “sorries” (our favorite Canadian word) but have we truly changed our mind or purposes?
John the Baptist cried ~ Bring forth fruit meet for repentance. In other words don’t tell me you’re sorry - show me. Show me by the change of behaviour, change of words, change of mind set, change of heart- for a godly sorrow works repentance not to be repented of.
We know change can only be done by the empowering work of the Holy Spirit and some personal inclinations -“iniquities”- might take longer to break off, but Jesus said it’s because we love our darkness more than the light; John 3:19 that repentance does not take place. When we step into the light, as he is in the light, there is no darkness abiding there; John 12:35,46. I have to ask myself regarding lingering actions, have I really changed my mind? Do I really agree with what God has said about this?
This work the Holy Spirit does in us is “miracle working power”, Acts 1:8. He is a purifier of the heart. He is holy. Where sin abounds, grace does much more abound, Romans 5:20 and from the Amplified bible it says grace has surpassed it (sin) and increased the more and superabounded. God is greater and the One who lives in us is greater than He that is in the world; 1 John 4:4. If we abide in Him and His word abides in us the power of that word keeps us from falling into old patterns of the old man. That word illuminates our understanding, it opens our eyes. It leads us into right paths; Psalm 23:3
As I stand to receive from God, any place where I have not turned from my ways to serve Him, becomes the stumbling block for my ability to receive from God. There are times each of us need mercy because we have sinned. If because of sin consciousness, we are unable to come boldly to Him, we do not receive the things He is willing to freely pour out.
James 4:3 tells us if we ask and fail to receive it’s because we have asked with the wrong motives. Our intention, in that case, is to get what we desire and spend it in sensual pleasures. In other words, wemay need some kind of healing, but when we do get healed we simply return to walk in the old places. James goes on to say this behaviour is like unfaithful wives having illicit love affairs with the world and breaking marriage vows to God. Whoever chooses to be a friend of the world takes his stand as an enemy of God. His Spirit dwelling in us yearns to be welcomed with a jealous love. He gives us more and more grace, power of the Holy Spirit, to meet the evil tendency.
1John 3: 20-21 God is greater than our heart and knows all things and if my heart does not condemn me then I have confidence toward God and whatever we ask, we receive.
What’s the answer? Again: James said, Come close to God and He will come close to you. We must acknowledge the sin, get our soiled hands clean; realize we have been disloyal, wavering, individuals with divided interests, and purify our hearts from spiritual adultery. ‘Humbling ourselves’ is the place before God that He will exalt us, lifting us up.
It is in the place of unity with our Father that He commands the blessing ~ life evermore.