Then he said, “When I was with you before, I told you that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and in the Psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. And he said, “Yes, it was written long ago that the Messiah would suffer and die and rise from the dead on the third day. It was also written that this message would be proclaimed in the authority of his name to all the nations, beginning in Jerusalem: ‘There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent.’

Luke 24:44-47 NLT


Are you aware of this message from Jesus, delivered to his disciples shortly after the resurrection? It’s called the Great Commission and is, in effect, the marching order of Christ to his church. He taught them that repentance and remission of sins must be preached in his name to all the nations.

It’s an important message for all of us to be aware of and yet, it’s not always talked about not even by those who preach from the Bible.

I have known some who – though looked on as wise and godly – are telling others that since Jesus died for us, our sins are forgiven and nothing else is required. That’s cheap grace.  As you can see in the Scripture above, forgiveness is given when we repent – repent meaning to have sorrow for our sin and to leave it behind. Has your pastor impressed this on you?

Acts 17:30 clearly states that Jesus commands people everywhere to repent. “To whomsoever the grace of repentance is given, to them the forgiveness of sins is applied.” (Gill’s Commentary)

If repentance were not required there would be no need to be sorry or to feel shame. People would feel  that if they do something wrong, there would be no cause for worry. Jesus did – after all – forgive us already when he died on the cross. As a result, people who believe this don’t even feel they need to say they’re sorry or show remorse when they’ve hurt someone. They may not even feel the need to admit they’ve done something wrong.

Don’t think the above sounds far-fetched. This kind of thing can happen, and it does. Without Christian principles in place, there would always be a danger that people could be treated badly. Wrong-doings can come to have evil proportions, damaging victims.

Jesus models an attitude of love – a way all followers are expected to behave towards others. To do otherwise would be in opposition to Christ, the founder of our faith. And where would that place us?

People who are guilty of thinking they don’t need to repent of their sins are living contrary to the nature of God and cannot be regarded as followers of Christ. They should not be preaching in the Christian church.

Check your own Bible. Check the internet and see what the commentaries say. Read others’ sermons. Not every person calling himself “pastor’ can be trusted with Christ’s truth.