The blessings and benefits of confession and repentance
This article is the first in a two part series in which we will look at the positive outcomes of when we confess and repent from wrongs we have done.
We read the following words in Hosea 6:1-2, ‘Come, and let us return to the LORD; for He has torn, but He will heal us; He has stricken, but He will bind us up. After two days He will revive us; on the third day He will raise us up, that we may live in His sight.’ These are incredibly powerful words. We hear the voice of the prophet calling out to God’s people in Israel and Judah to come to a place of repentance, or rather, to return to the Lord their God.
It begs the question: what is repentance? It is simply means a change of attitude, mind and direction.
The background to the prophetic words is one of the people of Israel, God’s chosen people, in a place they should not be because they had rebelled against God; they had gone away from the guiding principles and truths which underpinned their relationship with Yahweh. As a result they had suffered many setbacks, including exile and captivity in the hands of alien nations. It is in the midst of this catastrophic phase in Israel’s history that the prophet issues a clarion call to the people to return to the Lord, repent and turn back to Him.
He paints a picture and offers the benefits of returning to the Lord. Firstly, he says that their rebellion had caused them to be torn into pieces. Secondly, their heedlessness had caused them to be injured by the judgement of God. Thirdly, their waywardness had caused them to be stripped away to die. To each of these states of brokenness, he gives a description of the opposite positive outturn of a change of heart, mind and direction. So, in place of being torn, God would heal. In a place of being injured, God would bandage their wounds. Ultimately, God would restore and raise His people again.
By application this prophetic word comes to our world today, as it applies to every generation. In many ways as a nation, we, the United Kingdom, have wandered away from God. Legislation, policies, attitudes, mindsets and actions; from the greatest to the least of us, all show clear evidence of our rebellion against God. In His infinite love, He is calling us to return. As we do so, we will enjoy the blessings of being healed, bandaged up, being revived and raised up again to be the people He has called us to be.
Copyright Emmanuel Mbakwe 2014©
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