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Repentance, Part 2

Summit Life / J.D. Greear
The Truth Network Radio
November 15, 2022 9:00 am

Repentance, Part 2

Summit Life / J.D. Greear

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November 15, 2022 9:00 am

When the sun comes up in the morning, our natural response is to pull the pillow over our head and pretend it’s still dark. Do we respond the same way when our sins come to light?

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Today on Summit Life, JD Greer talks about true repentance. David is saying that he needs a forgiveness, listen, that removes the penalty of his sin, the sin debt, and cleanses his leprous heart. This whole psalm screams out for the gospel. Gospel center repentance finds its hope in the gospel. Welcome to Summit Life with pastor, author, and theologian, JD Greer.

I'm your host, Molly Bidevich, and we're so glad that you're back with us today. Okay, so is anyone out there a morning person? I don't know about you, but when the sun comes up in the morning, my natural response is just to pull the pillow back over my head and pretend it's still dark. And sadly, most of us have that same response when our sins come to light. We just ignore it and hope it'll go away or that nobody will notice. But today, pastor JD explains that for true repentance to happen, we can't keep excusing our sin and pushing it aside.

We need to expose it to the light. We are in a study of the life of King David, and today we'll be looking at a psalm that David wrote after he was caught in sexual sin. Let's rejoin pastor JD for part two of our message titled repentance. Proverbs 28, 13, whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.

That is a promise we are going to delve into deeply this weekend. You see, when we are exposed in our sin, we almost always react in one of four different ways. You ought to jot these down. Number one, we hide it. Number two, we rationalize it. We explain why our sin's not really that bad. Number three, we blame shift. We blame shift.

It's not really my fault. The fourth option, we repent. We repent, which is what David did. We acknowledge the full extent of our sin and we throw ourselves in the mercy of God. So I want to walk you deeply through this passage, this scripture, this psalm, Psalm 51.

We're going to spend the rest of our time there this weekend. This psalm, Psalm 51, gives you the anatomy, the internal workings of a true gospel-centered repentance. It's going to give you the six, actually let's go five, five essential elements of gospel-centered repentance. Psalm 51 verse one, have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love, according to your abundance, overflowing mercy.

Stop, all right. Write this down. Number one, gospel-centered repentance makes its sole hope the mercy of God. Verse three, for I know my transgressions and my sin is ever before me. Number two, gospel-centered repentance owns that the sin we committed is deeply inherent in who we are. Look at the next verse, verse four, against you, you only have I sinned and done what's evil in your sight. So what does David mean against you and you only have I sinned? This is a little deep, but it's the heart of the whole matter, okay.

So write this down. Number three, gospel-centered repentance is directed first toward God. Gospel-centered repentance is directed first toward God. You see, there are two very important reasons that David says against you and you only have I sinned.

I give them to you as an A and a B. A, he realizes his sin began as a sin against God. His sin began as a sin against God. David is saying, why is it that I needed that feeling of power that came from sleeping with Bathsheba? Why did I need that? Why did I run to Bathsheba as a refuge? Why did I crave Bathsheba's beauty? Why did my soul have this incredible suction power directed at her? I needed her arms, he says, because I did not have yours, God. I needed her beauty. I craved it because I was not captivated by your beauty, God.

All of our sin, you see, starts in a broken relationship with God. We're not satisfied with what God has given us or we don't trust God to take care of us, so we go around God outside of his boundaries to get what we want. Why are you jealous? Why is it that you get jealous? Isn't it because you look at somebody else that God has given to them what you wish he'd given to you?

So you're looking at somebody else's car, somebody's girlfriend, somebody's job, somebody's look, somebody's talents, and you're like, I wish I had that. In that moment, what you were saying is, God, I don't trust what you gave to me and I am not satisfied with you and your plan. And that's where sin begins. It's like I explained to you in our series on the Ten Commandments last year. Breaking the first commandment is what leads you to break all the other nine. The first commandment, you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and mind. If you obeyed that first commandment, the other nine would just fall naturally into place. The problem with any of the commandments that we break is that it goes back to a lack of trust in and satisfaction with God, and that's what David recognizes. My sin began as a sin against God.

Here's the second reason that little statement is true. David realizes that God is the most significant one he's offended. David realizes that God is the most significant one he's offended.

What he'd done to Uriah was hideous and despicable, yes, but what David did to God, believe it or not, is even worse. God was the one who created him. God was the one who saved him. God was the one who took him from the pastor.

God gave him everything. And David, at this point, is overwhelmed with this truth. And he looks to God, he says, against you, you only have I sinned.

That word, by the way, in Hebrew, when it's coupled, when it's doubled, you, you only, indicates an intensity of emotion. You, God, you, after all that you've given me and what you've shown me, I forsook you. Do you realize, listen, do you realize how large God is?

Do you realize how every breath that you have ever drawn and ever will draw is given to you by air that he has provided for you to breathe, and without him there would not be anything? Do you understand how large the God of the universe is, and that when you commit cosmic treason, how deserving you and I are of his wrath? Do you understand that our sin against him required the bloody, brutal death of his son to purchase forgiveness? Jesus did not go what he went through because of what we did to each other.

Jesus went through what he went through because of what we did to God. The whole doctrine of hell that we all hate. You realize that hell is what hell is because our sin was what our sin was against God. Hell was not created because of what we did to each other.

Hell is what created because of what we did to God, and David is overwhelmed by that, and he says, you, you, you, you are what I sinned against. Do you realize what Jesus has given you? Do you realize how gracious he has been and kind to you? Do you realize the goodness that he's poured out on you? Do you realize that when you have taken authority and said, I'll live how I want to live, and I will practice boldly the very things that put you on the cross, do you realize the heinousness of that sin to God?

Verse 6, behold, you delight in truth and the inward being, and you teach me wisdom in the secret places of my heart. Most of the time when we sin, we repent. Most of the time, excuse me, when we repent, our focus is on the action. God's focus is on the heart that led to the action. God does not care about your conformity to his law if inwardly you'd rather be doing something else.

Any more than I would, you know, my wife would want to be with me if she knew that the whole time I was secretly fantasizing about another woman. God does not want to dwell at a heart that is consumed with desire for sin any more than I would want to live in a beautiful brick home where there was rotting, maggot-infested corpses in every room. You see, until you deal with the heart, any change you make is going to be superficial. God, listen, God does not want a year of beautiful obedience. God wants an eternity, five billion years of willing, joyful obedience, and the only way that that's ever going to happen is if the desires of your heart are changed. That's why the focus of David's obedience is not on what he's done. That's why the focus of David's repentance is on what he had become. I didn't just commit adultery.

I'm the kind of person who commits adultery. So that leads into verse seven. Purge me with hyssop and I shall be clean. Wash me and I shall be whiter than snow.

That seems a little random, doesn't it? What is hyssop? When a leper is to be cleansed, you take the blood of a lamb, you take hyssop, and you wipe the leper with this blood and God will miraculously heal that leper. David is saying that he needs a forgiveness, listen, that removes the penalty of his sin, the sin debt, and cleanses his leprous heart.

You see where this is all going? This whole psalm screams out for the gospel. This whole psalm screams out for the gospel. In fact, write this down.

Here's number four. Gospel-centered repentance finds its hope in the gospel. Gospel-centered repentance cries out for the gospel or finds its hope in the gospel.

Let me show you this. Verse nine. Look at David's next series of prayers. Hide your face from my sins and blot out my iniquities. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Verse 11, cast me not away from your presence and take not your Holy Spirit from me. Verse 12, restore to me the joy of your salvation and uphold me with a willing spirit.

Do you see what David is calling out for? I need someone who can put away my sin. He's saying, I need salvation that can create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit, can replace my old bad desires with new desires. Listen, how are the desires of your heart ever going to be changed? How can you change the desires?

You can't just will it in the being, can you? What other area can you just will a change of desire? I wish that I desired to eat green beans and broccoli all the time, but I do not. I desire to eat cookie dough ice cream, okay?

I wish that I could just be like change, you know, and then tonight I'd be like, oh man, I just feel like having a good thing of green beans before I go to bed. I can't change that desire. How do I change my desires for sin? Yo, I know I sound like a broken record here, but let me just, you change those desires by the gospel. You learn to love God by experiencing his extravagant love for you. And in response to the gospel, that's how your heart is recreated. That's how you change. This is Summit Life, and we'll be right back with the rest of our teaching in just a moment.

But I wanted to tell you a little bit about our featured resource this month. We all know it's important to spend regular time in scripture, but we can get so distracted around the holidays, right? So for us as individuals, families, and churches, it's essential that we keep our focus on Jesus. What we celebrate at Christmas, God coming to earth, was always part of God's plan.

And throughout scripture, God changes everything for the people he meets, and it can change everything for you too. During this Advent season, God is inviting you to meet with him, to sit in his presence and remember his faithfulness from the beginning to today. What better way to celebrate this Christmas than by acknowledging Jesus as our savior and king. So we're offering you a 25-day Advent devotional to help you prepare your heart for Christmas. It's called He is Here.

Give a gift today by calling us at 866-335-5220, or go online to and reserve this resource today. Story was told, true story, back from the Civil War days of a man who was very much against slavery and went to the slave auction to purchase a slave. I heard this as being told about Abraham Lincoln.

I can't verify that it was really Abraham Lincoln, but that's where I heard it, right? So this man goes to purchase a slave at the slave auction, and after he purchases this slave girl, he takes her shackles off, gives her her papers, and says, you are free. She says, what do you mean? You're free. She says, free like, you know, I don't have to walk with shackles. You're not free to do whatever you want to do. I don't own you.

I bought you so that I could set you free. And she said, so I'm free to do whatever I want to do? He said, yeah. I'm free to go wherever I want to go? Yes. I'm free to live anywhere I want to live? Yes.

I'm free to become anything that I want to become? He said, yes. She said, I'm free to do all that? He said, yes.

He said, then I choose to go with you. What happens is, experiencing him, experiencing that kind of love, changed her heart so that she does not stay with him out of duty, but she stays with him out of desire. What happens when God sets us free and we experience the Gospel is that our heart is restructured, you see, so that we desire to love and be with God. You realize that what David is crying out for, what Jesus is, is something that restructures your heart, not so, not only that he forgives your sins and absorbs the penalty from them, but he actually breaks the power of sin so that the very structures of your heart begin to change. What Jesus does through the Gospel is he recreates your heart so that your spirit is renewed and it is willing, having experienced the love of God, you develop a love for God.

You can do it, Jesus does it, by shedding abroad his love in your heart and by filling you with the Holy Spirit. Number five, Gospel-centered repentance embraces the future promised by the Gospel. Gospel-centered repentance embraces the future promised by the Gospel. Real quick, just notice, there's like four verses there, I want you to, they all basically say the same thing. Verse 13, then I will teach you the same thing. I will teach transgressors your ways and sinners will return to you. Verse 14, my tongue will sing aloud of your righteousness. Verse 15, O Lord, open my lips, my mouth will declare your praise. Verse 18, do good to Zion in your good pleasure, build up the walls of Jerusalem. What just happened? Catch this, David is no longer focusing on his kingdom, he's now focusing again on God's.

You see that? When he's sitting with Bathsheba, he gotten focused on his kingdom and now he's now focused again on God's kingdom. What that means and what you take away from that is this, listen, repentance always involves turning from your kingdom to God's. The other thing that I want to say to you, and this is awesome, is that when that happens, God is able to take the things that have damaged you most and begin to use them for good in his kingdom.

David is going to be a more effective king, he's going to be a better symbol of Jesus now that he's been through this than he would have had he never gone through it to begin with. I know some of you find this hard to believe, but that pain, that shame, that guilt, those mistakes, God has a plan for you in those things where he is going to take those wounded parts and he's going to use them in his kingdom. I know so many beautiful stories right here in our church where somebody has experienced deep sin and now they've been given an understanding of God's grace that they would have never had had they not been through it.

God, in just the miraculous way that he works, takes even our mistakes and turns them into his greatest triumphs. Like I told you last week, we serve the God of the cross who can erase our mistakes and we also serve the God of the resurrection who can recreate our future. The blood of Jesus makes all things new. The resurrection of Jesus recreates newness through your life and takes your pain and uses it for yours and his kingdom's good. Gospel-based repentance, gospel-centered repentance embraces the future that God has for you. You see, this whole song cries out for something David had never seen with his eyes, but you and I know and that is it cries out for the gospel.

Y'all, the gospel is all through this chapter. David, 2 Samuel 12, what did Nathan say to him? You won't die, but your son will die. David's son was innocent. He was a baby.

He hadn't sinned. Do you understand what's going on there? Do you understand the picture that's being given to you? David, your son? David, your sin deserves death, but you're not going to die. One of your sons is going to die. One of your descendants. That little baby, we don't know his name, gave us a picture of another son that would be born to David eventually.

So that when he was born in Bethlehem, the city of David, the angels would say this, unto you is born this day in the city of David, a savior who is Christ the Lord, and you will call his name Jesus, which means in Hebrew, literally, God is my salvation because he will save his people from their sins. See, what this points, what this pours out to you is that the only way that you are ever going to be able to break this cycle of sin is by embracing Jesus' acceptance of you. This whole song cries out for the gospel. We always say to God, God, I will do better, I promise, I promise, I will do better. I will earn your forgiveness. You will never get that way ever.

You will continue to cycle. You will never get there that way. Jesus showed it one time to a woman who'd been caught in adultery. This is like the ultimate example for all time. Woman caught in adultery.

You know the story. She'd been caught in adultery. She's drugged there. She's ashamed. Jesus says, let him who has no sand cast off her stone.

They all drop their rocks and go home. And Jesus is standing there with the woman and says the most shocking statement probably in all the Bible. Neither do I condemn you, go and send no more. What's shocking about that statement is the order in which he put those two phrases. Because we always switch the order. We're like, if you don't send no more, God won't condemn you.

Jesus flipped them. He said, neither do I condemn you, go and send no more. Because this woman would gain the power to break this cycle of sin she was in precisely by learning of God's unconditional love for and acceptance of her. You see, listen, the only people who will ever get better are those who know that Jesus loves and accepts them whether or not they ever get better. The only way to break the power of sin that holds you and keeps dragging you down is for you to understand that God's love for you is not given to you based on whether or not you ever break that sin. It is only when you accept what Jesus has done for you and given to you that his acceptance to you is given to you as a gift and not as something you earn that you will have the ability to break the power of sin.

Are you understanding me? What I'm saying is there's some of you that struggle with homosexuality and God loves you the same whether or not you ever break that. Some of you are struggling because you have just been a non-stop cycle of sin. You understand what the gospel says is that you don't have to overcome that to earn God's love because Jesus overcame it and gave it to you as a gift. Like I told you, you don't gradually take steps to get closer to God.

You receive all in one minute the billion steps that he took to get close to you. And what happens is when you embrace that, that snaps the power of sin in your life. Power to overcome sin is not found in self-will and self-reliance. It is found in forgiveness.

It is found in embracing what Christ has done for you. One more real quick example. Again, very simple one but I heard a story, true story, of a guy, it was a dad talking about his daughter. He was talking about his daughter when she got in sixth grade she got selected because she was really smart to go and watch some of these AP English classes. And she was really smart but she didn't do well under pressure. So she gets in there, everybody's competing and she just starts to tank. She can't do the work, she can't make it and it's all because of the pressure. So her dad goes to the teachers like, listen, you know, my kid is smart obviously but she just can't handle the pressure, she can't handle the competition. I'm gonna need to take her out of this AP class. Her teacher did something totally unexpected, something I wish my teachers had done for me but never did. She said, I tell you what, I'm just gonna go ahead and give your daughter an A in the class right now, period. Whatever she does for the rest of the year, she gets an A.

Where was that woman when I was growing up, okay? She gets an A. I'm just gonna give it to her. She gets an A. Now she has freedom to be in the class. And this guy telling the story said, I couldn't believe it, my daughter couldn't believe it. He said, but the most profound change happened to my daughter and she was number one in that class.

She aced every single test because the pressure was gone. You understand that true righteousness, true virtue grows in freedom. Jesus has won your acceptance.

When you embrace it, all of a sudden the love, the ability to do right things grows up inside of you. The gospel, the gospel is what snaps the power of sin. Some of you got this sense of dread about your sin.

You don't have to listen to that. God speaks to you with hope. I know your heart is broken.

You're embarrassed because of that sin. In fact, here's your last verse, the last thing, I promise. Verse eight. Put up verse eight.

Show me verse eight. Let me hear joy and gladness. Let the bones that you have broken rejoice. I mean, if you've ever broken a bone, all of our campuses, raise your hand if you've ever broken a bone. Would the word that you use to describe the feeling of that moment be rejoice?

No. But David says, I rejoice because that breaking was a part of my healing. You can tell when there's a house that's falling apart, you can tell whether the owner, what he plans to do with it by the size of the tools he uses on that house. There's a wrecking ball he intends to destroy. If there's chisel he intends to restore. Jesus took the wrecking ball of our sin so that God could use the chisel on you. And what happens is he breaks your heart and he breaks your bones so that he can heal. His goal is your deliverance, not your destruction. His goal is your healing, not your condemnation. Come to Jesus today. He's the only one who can break the curse of sin and give you a new life, a new heart, and a new future. You're listening to Summit Life with Pastor J.D.

Greer. J.D., we're in the trenches of your teaching series on King David called Search for a King. Can you tell us a little bit about what we can expect as this study progresses? Yeah, King David is one of the most prominent characters in the Old Testament. In this series, you're going to see that even though David was the ideal king in one sense, his story is going to be punctuated at various points with a question mark because he's going to fail in some ways that we needed him not to fail.

And what you're going to see through this is that his life is actually pointing to another king. So our prayer is that through this study of the life of David, we would learn to see that Jesus is the ultimate king that we've been searching for. One of the things we wanted to provide is a 25-day Advent guide that shows how that great son of David, Jesus the king, is ultimately the savior and the king that you've been searching for. So you can reach out to us today. Go to and get yours so that you have it by December 1st and you're ready to let this guide you through the Advent season in a way that not only will deepen your relationship with God, but also enrich your holiday season.

So I think you'll like it. Yes, let us send you this timely resource now. Ask for He Is Here, 25 devotions for Advent when you give a donation today of $35 or more. Just call 866-335-5220.

Or you can give easily online at I'm Molly Bittovitch. Thankfully, God can restore us no matter what we've done. And in Christ, there's no condemnation. But even so, sin has consequences and tomorrow Pastor J.D. Greer explains why that is. We'll see you again Wednesday here on Summit Life with J.D. Greer. Today's program was produced and sponsored by J.D. Greer Ministries.
Whisper: medium.en / 2022-11-16 13:06:53 / 2022-11-16 13:17:28 / 11

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