This morning I tweeted
If you know me you know that I don’t spout off comments without clear thought or the ability to defend the statement. Some friends of mine have disagreed with the statement and since I think others can benefit from my response I will respond via my blog (plus it gives me something to write about for today) :).
The voice of the unrepentant is growing in the USA and across the world. One of the things they like to say is “God accepts me for who I am, the church should as well….blah blah blah.” This struck me one day so I did some research and found that nowhere in scripture can you associate or give an example of God/Jesus accepting people for who they are.
Let’s look at the word accept or acceptance.
accept: n. Consent to receive (a thing offered).
acceptance: n. The action of consenting to receive or undertake something offered.
To accept is to receive something. So Jesus is receiving you and for Jesus to receive you, you must be born again. The church associates the word repent with Jesus because repent means to feel regret about your wrongdoing or sin.
Let’s look at some examples
John 8:2-11 Jesus and the Adulterer
2 At dawn he appeared again in the temple courts, where all the people gathered around him, and he sat down to teach them. 3 The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group 4 and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5 In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” 6 They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him. But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. 7 When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” 8 Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.
9 At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. 10 Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”
11 “No one, sir,” she said.
“Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.” (action required that changes who she was = [a])
John 3:1-8 Jesus Teaches Nicodemus
Now there was a Pharisee, a man named Nicodemus who was a member of the Jewish ruling council. 2 He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with him.”
3 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.[a]”
4 “How can someone be born when they are old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely they cannot enter a second time into their mother’s womb to be born!”
5 Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit. 6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. 7 You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ 8 The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.”
He continues with the most famous part of the bible
16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. 19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. 20 Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. 21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.
Luke 19:1-10 Zacchaeus the Tax Collector
1 Jesus entered Jericho and was passing through. 2 A man was there by the name of Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was wealthy. 3 He wanted to see who Jesus was, but because he was short he could not see over the crowd. 4 So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree to see him, since Jesus was coming that way. 5 When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” 6 So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly. 7 All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a sinner.”
8 But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.” [a]
9 Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
All three examples show that Jesus did not accept them for who they were, there were actions associated with his acceptance.
Now let’s look at another example, only this one concerning the unrepentant.
Matthew 9:1-3 Jesus Forgives and Heals a Paralyzed Man
1 Jesus stepped into a boat, crossed over and came to his own town. 2 Some men brought to him a paralyzed man, lying on a mat. When Jesus saw their faith, [a] he said to the man, “Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven.”
3 At this, some of the teachers of the law said to themselves, “This fellow is blaspheming!”
Notice the difference with the unrepentant. They were offended that someone had the nerve to state your sins are forgiven.
I close with this: Jesus stands at the door of your heart knocking. He wants YOU to come to HIM AS YOU ARE.
Come to him broken, vile, hurt, bitter, rude, murderer, pornographer, pedophile, sinful and every other vicious evil you can think of.
When you open the door of your heart after hearing His knock, you are faced with a choice.
Will you repent?
Will you accept Jesus just the way HE is?
For he will not accept you for the way you are.
YOU MUST BE BORN AGAIN.