"They went off, preaching the need of repentance." —Mark 6:12
As soon as Jesus sent out His apostles, they made it a priority to emphasize repentance in their preaching (Mk 6:12). However, we don't hear this kind of emphasis on repentance today. If disciples of Jesus don't emphasize repentance, certainly the secular world and sinners will not! Notice how the Scriptures constantly focus on sincere and immediate repentance for our sins:
- John the Baptizer proclaimed "a baptism of repentance which led to the forgiveness of sins" (Lk 3:3).
- The first words spoken by Jesus in His public ministry are: "Reform your lives!" (Mt 4:17)
- After Jesus rose, He appeared to the apostles and said: "In [My] name, penance for the remission of sins is to be preached to all the nations" (Lk 24:47).
- On the day of Pentecost, as the Church was born, Peter preached repentance to the crowds, saying: "You must reform and be baptized, each one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ, that your sins may be forgiven" (Acts 2:38).
Repent with godly sorrow (2 Cor 7:11). Bring people to Confession. Throw a Confession party (Lk 15:22ff) and invite your friends to celebrate along with the angels and saints in heaven (Lk 15:7, 10, 32). "Be earnest about it, therefore. Repent!" (Rv 3:19)
Prayer: Jesus, You died so that people would repent. May I place the same priority on repentance as You do. May I die to myself so that sinners would repent immediately (Sir 5:8) and return to You.
Promise: "They expelled many demons, anointed the sick with oil, and worked many cures." —Mk 6:13
Praise: St. Blase refused to be involved with pagan worship and became a great witness by his martyrdom.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
Rescript: †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July27, 2010
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