A-02 Basic Lessons for a Prophet

Lesson 2: Repentance unto Life
Eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek for glory, honor, and immortality (Romans 2:7). To us God has granted repentance unto life. Repentance is the Holy Spirit’s assistance to move us from the weights and sins that cause us to have wipe-outs to focus on the perfect work of the cross, which is the power of God unto salvation (glory, honor and immortality) for those who dare to believe it all. Walking with God is having our focus of faith fixed on the Lord Jesus Christ which only comes through deep repentance. The fruit of deep repentance is humble love with an intense and steadfast focus on the Lord. Repentance is that which destroys the tree of the knowledge of good (legalism) and evil (lawlessness), which separates you from the life that is in the Lord Jesus Christ. Repentance removes your focus from yourself and fixed it on the eternal accomplishment of the cross and on the person of Jesus Christ our Lord (tree of life). Focusing on the Lord is an integral part of our relationship with God that brings forth His glory and honor and crown us with immortality. Repentance unto life is to overcome our independence from Christ that we may partake of the tree of life and in doing so come to the knowledge of the love of the Father. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give to eat from the tree of life, which is in the midst of the Paradise of God (Revelation 2:7). The ultimate purpose of all repentance as a son of God, is to share the life of the Lord Jesus

Christ with Him that we, in Him, may know the love of the Father. Repentance is the restoration of our focus on God which Adam lost when he transgressed the instruction of the Lord. Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God (Hebrews 12:1-2, emphasis added). When Adam took his focus of God he placed his focus on himself and became discontent with what he saw he was in God, and he sinned. When he transgressed the commandment of the Lord, the liberty that he had in God was replaced with overwhelming weights and sins. Weights and sins are results of a focus that has moved from the Lord to self. The seed of the tree of knowledge of good (law) and evil (lawlessness) changed man’s nature to set his focus on himself to seek wisdom and knowledge which is not Christ. All things that are outside of God are isolated from the life that is in Him and therefore conform to the very definition of death. Its poisonous seed is from the heart of the evil one and it brings forth fruit that is pleasant to the eye, and desirable to make one wise but its end is death and destruction. Adam’s disobedience started with a shift of focus on the Lord to a focus on himself. He partook of the tree of arrogance (tree of the knowledge of good and evil) and the eyes of his spirit were instantly blinded by his heart of flesh that turned in to an evil unbelieving heart of stone. Adam and Eve in their disobedience betrayed the love of the Father and they fell from the glory of God. They have

dishonored the law of Christ’s consuming love that ruled their members. Their transgression meant separation from the light of His presence and a plunging in to the darkness of their own deceptive hearts and anxious souls. They have gathered for themselves and for us treasures of sin and death hence the necessity of perpetual repentance. Perpetual repentance is mainly a constant finetuning of our focus on the Lord and on His cross. BEHOLD THE CROSS! You behold the cross when you relate to the Lord on the basis of what He has achieved for us on the cross. You start to behold the cross when you start meditating on the word of His cross. When a wise man partakes of the body and blood of the Lord he examines his own heart lest he drinks damnation to himself. The discernment emphasizes the partaking of the bread, which is His body that makes us whole. The wine is His blood for the remission of our sin. The wise judges himself less he be judged by the Lord. However, the humble put no confidence in his imperfect judgment and call on the Lord for His perfect and true judgments that is desired by the pure in heart. Search me, O God and know my heart; try me, and know my anxieties; and see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting (Psalms 139:23-24). The humble focuses so much on the Lord that he or she put no confidence in the flesh. In repentance there is mourning. Blessed are those that mourn, for they shall be comforted (Matthew 5:4). It does not refer to the mourning over the dead body of a beloved or serious injury of a close family member. The sorrow of this world produces death. For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death (2 Corinthians 7:10). The sorrow of this world produces self-pity because the focus is on self, which is destructive to both soul and body. The mourning Jesus referred to

is because of loss for what you could have been in God but are not because of a lack of commitment and dedication. You may mourn the discovery of the corruption and darkness in your own selfish and self-centered soul as a result of a wrong focus. You may mourn the lack of purity of love that is in Christ because of haughtiness and arrogance that rules your heart. When you see darkness filling your heart then you must not dwell on yourself, or seek to justify yourself with dead works but turn the focus of your heart to Christ. True repentance is turning your focus back to Him. You do that by meditating on His word for your situation. You can get out of your predicament in little time if you want it. You can be as close to Him as you desire to be in this life. The choice is yours not His. Believe me, He is waiting for you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart (Jeremiah 29:13). When you draw near to the Lord by focusing on Him in waiting on Him and meditating on His word, restoration takes place. Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water (Hebrews 10:22, emphasis added). When you are meditating on the word of God, it renews your mindset in giving you hope and strengthens your faith and trust in the Lord. It also causes fountains of worship to erupt from your heart when you behold the awesomeness of His person and heed His astounding and illustrious deeds and remember His holy name. It is unthinkable not to give the Lord of glory your heart, your mind and seat of your emotions. It is hard for me to relate to it. However, I know anyone can fall anytime, anyplace if your focus is not on the Lord. That keeps me very humble because I know how weak I am in the flesh. It is utter joy to turn your focus back on Him whom your soul loves.

Humility is a result of a constant focus on the Lord. In the beginning of Paul’s Christian life he did not feel inferior to the most imminent apostles. For I consider that I am not at all inferior to the most eminent apostles. Even though I am untrained in speech, yet I am not in knowledge. But we have been manifested among you in all things. (2 Corinthians 11:5-6). It seems to me that knowledge and the manifestation of spiritual gifts was the chief issue for him at the time to compare himself against the imminent apostles. In 2 Corinthians 12:11-13 it is clear that Paul was offended that the church in Corinth doubted and questioned his authority as an apostle of Jesus Christ, which he defended. As he grew in faith in the Lord he acknowledged at a later stage in his life that he was the least of the apostles. For I am the least of the apostles, who am not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God (1 Corinthians 15:9). Eventually he referred to himself as less than the least of all the saints. To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ (Ephesians 3:8). Finally, he realized that he was the greatest of sinners. This is a faithful saying worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief (I Timothy 1:15). I believe Paul said it because he had been given so much to understand but walking in much less. There is only One who fully believed, who fully obeyed, and who truly finished all that He was given to do. Everyone, to date, has fallen short, except One. The grace of Christ is so awesome that I believe if you can enter into a relationship with Him where you totally share His life with Him that you need not to fall short. If He lives in you to the fullest measure than it is Him the perfect One that lives and not you. He can and desires to reveal the excellence of His power and glory in you. He paid for it! He made provision for it! It is finished, it is there! You only need to lay hold of it through faith.

In the kingdom of God there will be many different levels of glory. But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay, some for honor and some for dishonor (2 Timothy 2:20). The reward that the Lord will bestow on His servants will be in accordance to what they accomplished with the grace, gifts and talents they have received from the Holy Spirit. The highest of honor will be bestowed on those who lived their lives in close union with the Savior. It is to walk in humility and constantly to conform more to His likeness. As they constantly focus on Him they will see Him as He is and change from glory to glory in His image as by the Spirit of the Lord. To walk according to the flesh is the way the five foolish virgins followed that resulted in heavens refusal of their entrance to the marriage feast of the Lamb. These virgins were born again believers, not engaging themselves in gross sins. However, there is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death (Proverbs 14:12). If you walk according to the dictates of the flesh you will die. They were washed in the blood of the Lamb but they did not pursue God’s best. They slept their time away as they did not serve God with all of their heart. They were not looking for the extra portion of anointing oil of the Holy Spirit because they did not pursue the upward call of God in Jesus Christ. The high calling of God’s best for us is achieved through Christ and Him alone and not through efforts of the flesh that attempt changes on the outside that will never last. They did not press on to lay hold of Christ in the same manner that Christ has lay hold of them and they lost out because they set their focus not on the things of Christ. I want to emphasize that our lives are hidden with Christ in God and it is Him that lives through us by faith. It appears that the foolish virgins started in the Spirit but trying to complete their full salvation by works of the flesh,

maintaining a self-centered focus. They ended up as vessels of wood and clay in the house of their Master, vessels of dishonor. If a man’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet as through fire (1 Corinthians 3:15). Perpetual repentance is a constant pressing in to know God. Repentance is a turning to Christ. If you turn your focus away from yourself toward Christ everything can change for you. The princes of heaven live in the Spirit. Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel of honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work (2 Timothy 2:21). It is great folly to be focused on yourself and to walk after the foolishness of your fleshly mind. To be focused on yourself is to be locked into the darkness of your fallen nature which is a hopeless cause. The heart of man is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked (Hebrew: incurable sick); who can know it (1 Peter 2:11). When Peter’s mind was focused on heavenly things, contemplating who Jesus was, he found himself in a flow of revelation. He said to them, “But who do you say that I am? Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 16:15-17). When Peter focused on himself while Jesus predicted His own death the first time, Peter was concerned about his own personal loss if Jesus would die. He reacted with his fleshly mind. Then Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “Far be it from You, Lord; this shall not happened to you! But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are an offense to Me,

for you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men” (Matthew 16:22-23). If you live by the flesh (wrong focus) you will miss out on the higher calling of God in Christ Jesus. One tends to judge other people if one walk in the flesh. You cannot discern with the flesh the spirit of another person. With the flesh you will make him either better than he really is or worse. Judge not, that you not be judged. For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you (Ephesians 4:22). If you walk in the flesh you cannot really forgive somebody else. It takes much faith to forgive serious offenses. Forgiveness is not negotiable in a walk with God. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses (Mark 11:26). The ultimate test of Christianity is love. A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for another (John 13:34-35). The only barometer of your relationship with God is love. Love never fails! Do not tell me you hear the voice of the Lord clearly if you do not love. I will tell you, “Yes, you may hear Him vaguely but you have serious distortion problems with your hearing.” Go and repent; move your focus on the Lord. You will be surprised about the positive changes that will take place in your spirit and heart. Repentance has everything to do with the grace of God. Grace is the forgiveness of recurring sins in our lives as well as the power to live a victorious life in Christ. The battle against our old nature is a battle of focus. The grace of God cancels our repeated failures if we at least try to maintain a focus of faith on Christ. Many are under a cloud of deception thinking that they do not have to fight but have the “grace” to live in sin and God will still

forgive them. God is not to be mocked, whatever man sows he will reap. This erroneous attitude is mentioned in Scripture. For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have become partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, if they fall away, to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify again for themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an open shame. For the earth which drinks in the rain that often comes upon it, and bears herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated, receives blessing from God; but if it bears thorns and briers, it is rejected and near to being cursed, whose end is to be burned. But, beloved, we are confident of better things concerning you, yes, things that accompany salvation, though we speak in this manner. For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister. And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end, that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises (Hebrews 6:4-12). It is foolish to come into a relationship with Christ, through the work of the cross, and then to defect from the faith to serve self and the devil again. To defect is to purposefully turn your back on Christ and it is past the point of mere backsliding into sin. If we have taste, “the heavenly gift, shared in the Holy Spirit, tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come” it will not be possible to be renewed to God again. This is to grow into an advanced level of maturity and revelation of God and His ways and if we fall from this we are irredeemable. When we came to Christ we become one spirit with Him. A deliberate turning away from Him is to

crucify Him again. It does not mean we bring Christ physical down to earth and nail Him afresh bodily on a tree. The most traumatic experience of the cross was when the Father separated His spirit from the Lord Jesus Christ’s. When you crucify the Lord afresh by turning away from the faith He will divorce His Spirit from you. It will be just as traumatic for Him as when the Father forsook Him on the cross, thus crucify again the Son of God afresh and put Him to an open shame. When the Father forsook the Son it was the most traumatic experience the Holy Trinity ever experienced. For a moment in time the Holy Trinity was no trinity. The Father and the Holy Spirit forsook the Son because of our transgression. If He forsakes you by loosening His Spirit from yours, because of you crucifying Him afresh there remains no other offering whereby you can be reconciled to God anew. The Lord is a consuming fire. It is a terrible thing to fall in the hands of the living God. The more mature we are in Christ, the more devastating the consequences of our sins can be, especially the turning away from God to serve sin. We saw how Satan fell, who had a high position of glory, and he hit the bottom. Turning away from God is no option for us. When a toddler walks he fell daily. Without thinking about it he gets up and continues his little journey. Occasionally he may get hurt and cry but very seldom he will injure himself to the measure where he is out of action for a time. Like toddlers we stumble daily but the righteous keep getting up and do not stay down. “For a righteous man may fall seven times and rise again” (Proverbs 24:16a). The battle between spirit and flesh is God’s grace to overcome our old nature of sin. Battles are God’s grace to mature and strengthen us.

We are transformed by the renewing of our minds (Romans 12:2). Transformation takes place in the imagination of our minds and thus we are changed in the spirit of our minds. The Greek word transformed means metamorphosis. Metamorphosis is the process that a caterpillar undergoes to be changed into a butterfly. The greatest struggle the butterfly experienced is to break out of the cocoon, but it is this struggle that strengthens the butterfly that it can flap its huge wings. Our greatest struggle is to focus on the Lord that we may be changed in the spirit of our minds. When we behold the Lord with an open face, as in a mirror, the glory of the Lord changed us into the same image from glory to glory as by the Spirit of the Lord. The more we exercise the focus of our faith the more easily it become and the more we change into the likeness of the Lord.

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