Should the church call people to repent of sin?

Someone said, “I do NOT like it when conservative Christians call people to repentance. Why don’t we leave that to Jesus, and not pretend to put ourselves in his place.”

I see the question being, “Did Jesus and Paul, et. al., just hang out with sinners, or did He call them to repent?”

Jesus DID hang out with sinners. But He did so because they needed to know love, hear the truth, and be called to a different life. As people turned to God, they turned away from evil and did good works.

Luke 7:37

37When a woman who had lived a sinful life in that town learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, she brought an alabaster jar of perfume

Luke 19:7-10

All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a ‘sinner.’ “

 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.”

 Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. 10For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.”

Matthew 2:27-32

 13 Once again Jesus went out beside the lake. A large crowd came to him, and he began to teach them. 14 As he walked along, he saw Levi son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax collector’s booth. “Follow me,” Jesus told him, and Levi got up and followed him.

 15 While Jesus was having dinner at Levi’s house, many tax collectors and “sinners” were eating with him and his disciples, for there were many who followed him. 16 When the teachers of the law who were Pharisees saw him eating with the “sinners” and tax collectors, they asked his disciples: “Why does he eat with tax collectors and ‘sinners’?”

17 On hearing this, Jesus said to them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”

The apostles ALSO called sinners to repent and turn to God.

Acts 2:38,

38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

Acts 3:19

19 Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord,

Acts 8:22

22 Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive you for having such a thought in your heart.

Acts 17:30

30 In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent.

Acts 26:20

20 First to those in Damascus, then to those in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and to the Gentiles also, I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds.

Galatians 5:1

 1It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

Jesus told his followers to teach what HE had taught.

Matthew 28:19-20

19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.

So all believers everywhere are called to tell people the news: Christ has come to set them free from their sins. By accepting the forgiveness of their sins because of what God has done by sending Christ to suffer and die for their sins, they can have eternal life. They need to turn away from sin, and turn to God by putting their trust in Christ. So yes, the church SHOULD call people to repent of sin.

 

 

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