Sunday, January 10, 2016

Why Repentance Matters

I was having a conversation with a colleague about why we teach repentance in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and why our doctrine is more repentance focused as opposed to the customary evangelical grace-only focus. God commands in LDS scripture, "Say nothing but repentance unto this generation" (D&C 6:9).

Disciples of Christ receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.  When we go to church we continually hear accounts of members listening to the still small voice of the Comforter prompting them to visit someone who is sick, or to avoid tragedy or accident.  We hear stories of persons who were prompted not to do this, or not to go there and they have through their obedience, witnessed the miraculous preservation of their lives.

You cannot be living in willful sin and be as receptive to the Lord's voice.  Sin drowns out our spiritual sensitivity.  We have to be clean to be empowered to be an instrument in the hands of the Lord in His work.  The more purified we can become, the more in-tune we can be to the promptings of the Holy Spirit.

In Hollywood, the hero is often depicted as being immoral and that the immorality usually doesn't matter and may even contribute to His or her success.  The truth is that the greatest heroes and people that have made the biggest difference in this world have been men and women of faith in Christ and also virtue and integrity.

"Depart ye, depart ye, go ye out from thence, touch no unclean thing; go ye out of the midst of her; be ye clean, that bear the vessels of the Lord."(Old Testament, Isaiah 52:11)

My friend likes to quote CS Lewis that all Christian groups are living in different rooms in the same house and our similarities are more important than our differences.  This point of repentance proves that the differences do matter. When it comes to being receptive to the the "still small voice" of God's Holy Spirit, repentance and being clean matters.  Because of the Great Apostasy, traditional Christianity are unfortunately living in the wrong house.

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