Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.” Mark 1:14-15
What does it mean to repent? It’s an unpopular message, yet it seems to be a key requirement that Jesus and the apostles often emphasize. What is the gospel that we are to believe in? Neither repentance nor the gospel are solely New Testament concepts. Yahweh speaks through the prophet Ezekiel in these scriptures:
Eze 18:23 Have I delight by any means in the death of the wicked, declares the Lord Yahweh, and not at his turning from his way, so that he lives?
Eze 18:24 And when the righteous turns from his righteousness, so that he does injustice, and does all of the detestable things that the wicked do, then will he live because of all of his righteousness that he did? Those things will not be remembered because of his infidelity that he displayed, and because of his sin that he committed. Through them he shall die.
Eze 18:25 “Yet you say, ‘The way of the Lord is not fair!’ Listen, now, house of Israel, is my way not fair? Is it not your ways that are not fair?
Eze 18:26 When the righteous turns from his righteousness, and he does injustice, then he will die because of them; because of his injustice that he did he will die!
Eze 18:27 And when the wicked turns from his wickedness that he did and he does justice and righteousness, he will preserve his life.
Eze 18:28 And if he sees and he returns from all of his transgressions that he did, surely he will live; he will not die!
Eze 18:29 And yet they, the house of Israel, say, ‘The way of the Lord is not fair!’ Are not my ways fair, house of Israel? Are not your ways unfair?
Eze 18:30 “Therefore I will judge you, house of Israel, each one according to his ways,” declares the Lord Yahweh. “Repent and turn around from all of your transgression, and it will not be as a stumbling block of iniquity to you.
Eze 18:31 Throw away from yourselves all of your transgressions that you committed, and make for yourselves a new heart and new spirit, and so why will you die, house of Israel?
Verse 24 throws cold water on the once saved, always saved theology, much like the writer of Hebrews does:
Heb 6:4 For it is impossible, in the case of those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit,
Heb 6:5 and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come,
Heb 6:6 and then have fallen away, to restore them again to repentance, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harm and holding him up to contempt.
Heb 6:7 For land that has drunk the rain that often falls on it, and produces a crop useful to those for whose sake it is cultivated, receives a blessing from God.
Heb 6:8 But if it bears thorns and thistles, it is worthless and near to being cursed, and its end is to be burned.
Heb 6:9 Though we speak in this way, yet in your case, beloved, we feel sure of better things—things that belong to salvation.
Heb 6:10 For God is not unjust so as to overlook your work and the love that you have shown for his name in serving the saints, as you still do.
These are some hard topics, especially since they are not discussed often. Today, it is all about being tolerant and inclusive. However, is that what Jesus preached? The ones preaching tolerance today are often quite intolerant of anything that opposes their world view. Paul warns of these people in his letter to Timothy:
2Ti 3:1 But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty.
2Ti 3:2 For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy,
2Ti 3:3 heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good,
2Ti 3:4 treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,
2Ti 3:5 having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.
2Ti 3:6 For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions,
2Ti 3:7 always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth.
Jesus tells His audience to repent or perish. He never indicated that if a person was a “good person” they need not repent, or that their sin would not count against them. We can be forgiven only when we repent. Psalms 14 says, “There is not one who does good; there is not even one.”
Luk 13:1 There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices.
Luk 13:2 And he answered them, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way?
Luk 13:3 No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.
Luk 13:4 Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem?
Luk 13:5 No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”
There is no other record concerning these events Jesus was speaking about; however, it is clear that these people who had died in unfortunate circumstances where no worse offenders than anyone else. Anyone that does not repent “will likewise perish”. It is interesting to note that Jesus uses the word perish numerous times throughout scripture, and does not always equate that to being in a place of torment forever. Jesus tells His audience to repent or perish. Yahweh has always wanted this. It was the purpose of the prophet Jonah’s trip to Nineveh.
Jon 3:3 So Jonah got up and went to Nineveh according to the word of Yahweh. Now Nineveh was an extraordinarily great city—a journey of three days across.
Jon 3:4 And Jonah began to go into the city a journey of one day, and he cried out and said, “Forty more days and Nineveh will be demolished!”
Jon 3:5 And the people of Nineveh believed in God, and they proclaimed a fast and put on sackcloth—from the greatest of them to the least important.
Jon 3:6 And the news reached the king of Nineveh, and he rose from his throne and removed his royal robe, put on sackcloth, and sat in the ashes.
Jon 3:7 And he had a proclamation made, and said, “In Nineveh, by a decree of the king and his nobles: “No human being or animal, no herd or flock, shall taste anything! They must not eat, and they must not drink water!
Jon 3:8 And the human beings and the animals must be covered with sackcloth! And they must call forcefully to God, and each must turn from his evil way and from the violence that is in his hands.
Jon 3:9 Who knows? God may relent and change his mind and turn from his blazing anger so that we will not perish.”
Jon 3:10 And God saw their deeds—that they turned from their evil ways—and God changed his mind about the evil that he had said he would bring upon them, and he did not do it.
How do we repent? Peter tells us in the book of Acts.
Act 2:36 Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”
Act 2:37 Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?”
Act 2:38 And Peter said to them, “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.
Act 2:39 For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.”
Peter is addressing “all” the house of Israel. This is all twelve tribes which include Judah, the “Jews”, the other eleven tribes scattered throughout the whole world, and all that are far off. This is the gospel. There is a path for those previously cut off, divorced from Yahweh and “not His people”, or the nations. Everyone knew what Peter was speaking about and it was truly “good news”. Paul says the same thing in his letter to the Ephesians:
Eph 2:11 Therefore remember that at one time you Gentiles in the flesh, called “the uncircumcision” by what is called the circumcision, which is made in the flesh by hands—
Eph 2:12 remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.
Eph 2:13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.
“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.” When we repent for the forgiveness of our sins, how can we define sin other than the transgression of Yahweh’s law? In doing so we get the gift of the Holy Spirit, which is in a sense, Jesus in spirit. First, we can see Paul defines sin as breaking the law of Yahweh. The law of Yahweh defines sin.
Rom 7:7 What then shall we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet if it had not been for the law, I would not have known sin. For I would not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.
John also defines sin:
1Jn 3:4 Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness.
1Jn 3:5 You know that he appeared in order to take away sins, and in him there is no sin.
1Jn 3:6 No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him.
1Jn 3:7 Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous.
1Jn 3:8 Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.
1Jn 3:9 No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him; and he cannot keep on sinning, because he has been born of God.
1Jn 3:10 By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother.
These words of John go against the current narrative that says we shouldn’t follow the law of Yahweh and that we can’t do it, so don’t try. John also says this:
1Jn 2:1 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.
1Jn 2:2 He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.
1Jn 2:3 And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments.
1Jn 2:4 Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him,
1Jn 2:5 but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him:
1Jn 2:6 whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.
1Jn 2:7 Beloved, I am writing you no new commandment, but an old commandment that you had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word that you have heard.
1Jn 2:8 At the same time, it is a new commandment that I am writing to you, which is true in him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining.
Paul can be confusing, and right here John is also confusing. On one hand, John says that no one who abides in Him, Yahweh God, keeps on sinning, but on the other hand, if we do sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. There is a difference between practicing sin and committing a sin. Practicing sin, or lawlessness, would mean a person has no regard for Yahweh’s instructions or does not believe these instructions are relevant, where practicing righteousness would mean a person was studying, learning and doing the ways of Yahweh. Notice John says he is not giving a new commandment, but an old commandment known from the beginning. What commandments did we have in the beginning if not the ones Yahweh gave to the twelve tribes? When we repent and receive the Spirit of Truth from Jesus, then we are empowered to practice righteousness. If we don’t repent, as Jesus said, we will perish. Why do I say the Spirit comes from Jesus? Let’s look at the following:
Joh 20:21 Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.”
Joh 20:22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.
Joh 15:26 “But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me.
So the Spirit is sent by Jesus, from the Father. Jesus also says, “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.” Matthew 18:20. How is He with us but through the Spirit? Paul addresses the people at Athens about repentance in the following passages:
Act 17:29 Being then God’s offspring, we ought not to think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination of man.
Act 17:30 The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent,
Act 17:31 because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.”
For those who say we cannot practice righteousness by keeping the commandments, why do you contradict Yahweh, creator of the universe? He tells us it is not too hard:
Deu 30:11 “For this commandment that I command you today is not too hard for you, neither is it far off.
Deu 30:12 It is not in heaven, that you should say, ‘Who will ascend to heaven for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?’
Deu 30:13 Neither is it beyond the sea, that you should say, ‘Who will go over the sea for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?’
Deu 30:14 But the word is very near you. It is in your mouth and in your heart, so that you can do it.
Again, repent. From what? Practicing lawlessness. Why? Yahweh has a fixed day in which He will judge everyone. Please see my blog post The Great Day of Yahuah for more on this subject.
Isa 1:27 Zion will be redeemed by justice, and those of her who repent, by righteousness.
Isa 1:28 But the destruction of rebels and sinners shall be together, and those who forsake Yahweh will perish.
In Isaiah we see this word perish again. What does it mean? It is Strong’s H3615, and it means to be ended, vanish, destroyed and exterminated. There is no mention about eternal torment in fire, for that reason we will look at this subject closer later.
1) to accomplish, cease, consume, determine, end, fail, finish, be complete, be accomplished, be ended, be at an end, be finished, be spent
1a1) to be complete, be at an end
1a2) to be completed, be finished
1a3) to be accomplished, be fulfilled
1a4) to be determined, be plotted (bad sense)
1a5) to be spent, be used up
1a6) to waste away, be exhausted, fail
1a7) to come to an end, vanish, perish, be destroyed
1b1) to complete, bring to an end, finish
1b2) to complete (a period of time)
1b3) to finish (doing a thing)
1b4) to make an end, end
1b5) to accomplish, fulfil, bring to pass
1b6) to accomplish, determine (in thought)
1b7) to put an end to, cause to cease
1b8) to cause to fail, exhaust, use up, spend
1b9) to destroy, exterminate
1c) (Pual) to be finished, be ended, be completed
How have we arrived at the place where there is no longer talk of repentance or practicing righteousness? Jesus did not come for the well, but the sick.
Mat 9:11 And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?”
Mat 9:12 But when he heard it, he said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick.
Mat 9:13 Go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.”
Is Jesus no longer an effective physician? Why do there continue to be so many who call themselves Christians which are not healed in their spirit? It is from the lack of repentance and not practicing righteousness, which results in not having the Spirit of Truth to guide them. It is our duty to tell people to repent and the good news is that there is now a path through Jesus for eternal life. We quote John 3:16, but what about 3:20 and 21?
Joh 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
Joh 3:17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.
Joh 3:18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.
Joh 3:19 And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil.
Joh 3:20 For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed.
Joh 3:21 But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”
Those who are well need to sound the alarm!
Zec 11:17 “Woe, my worthless shepherd who deserts the flock! May a sword fall on his arm and on his right eye! May his arm wither completely and his right eye be utterly blinded!”
Jer 14:13 Then I said, “Ah, Lord Yahweh, look, the prophets are saying to them, ‘You will not see the sword, and famine will not be yours, but reliable peace I will give to you in this place.'”
Jer 14:14 And Yahweh said to me, “The prophets are prophesying lies in my name. I have not sent them, and I have not commanded them, and I have not spoken to them. They are prophesying to you a lying vision, and a divination, worthless, and the deceitfulness of their minds.”
Jer 14:15 Therefore thus says Yahweh concerning the prophets who prophecy in my name though I have not sent them, yet they are saying, “Sword and famine will not be in this land.””By the sword and by the famine those prophets will perish.
Our ancestors have inherited lies! They have been tricked into worshipping the idols of the nations on the feast days of demons! They have been told not to follow the instructions of Yahweh. They have mixed the good news of the gospel with philosophy and theosophy.
Jer 16:19 O Yahweh, my strength, and my stronghold, and my refuge in the day of distress, to you the nations will come from the ends of the earth, and they will say, “Our ancestors have inherited only lies, vanity, and there is no profit in them.
Jer 16:20 Can a human make for himself gods? Yet they are not gods!”
Jer 16:21 “Therefore look, I am about to let them know, this time I am going to let them know my power and my might, and they will know that my name is Yahweh.”
One of the purposes of this blog site is to help identify some of the lies Jeremiah was prophesying about. People are starting to wake up to many of the lies we have inherited. Once a person sees it, it cannot be unseen, and we are compelled to call the lies out. Practice righteousness, not lawlessness.
Act 3:19 Therefore repent and turn back, so that your sins may be blotted out,
Act 3:20 so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and he may send the Christ appointed for you—Jesus,
Act 3:21 whom heaven must receive until the times of the restoration of all things, about which God spoke through the mouth of his holy prophets from earliest times.
The word lawlessness comes from the Greek word anomos, Strong’s G459.
1) destitute of (the Mosaic) law
1a) of the Gentiles
2) departing from the law, a violator of the law, lawless, wicked
Rev 22:11 Let the evildoer still do evil, and the filthy still be filthy, and the righteous still do right, and the holy still be holy.”
Rev 22:12 “Behold, I am coming soon, bringing my recompense with me, to repay each one for what he has done.
Rev 22:13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.”
Rev 22:14 Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life and that they may enter the city by the gates.
Rev 22:15 Outside are the dogs and sorcerers and the sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.
Rev 22:16 “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify to you about these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.”
What is it to perish compared to be in eternal flames? Jesus throws the beast and the false prophet in the eternal flames when he comes back, yet the rest were slain by the sword of His mouth having their flesh eaten by birds.
Rev 19:19 And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth with their armies gathered to make war against him who was sitting on the horse and against his army.
Rev 19:20 And the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who in its presence had done the signs by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped its image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulfur.
Rev 19:21 And the rest were slain by the sword that came from the mouth of him who was sitting on the horse, and all the birds were gorged with their flesh.
We also see that anyone who takes the mark of the beast or worships the beast will be thrown into the lake of fire having no rest forever and ever.
Rev 14:9 And another angel, a third, followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and its image and receives a mark on his forehead or on his hand,
Rev 14:10 he also will drink the wine of God’s wrath, poured full strength into the cup of his anger, and he will be tormented with fire and sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb.
Rev 14:11 And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever, and they have no rest, day or night, these worshipers of the beast and its image, and whoever receives the mark of its name.”
Rev 14:12 Here is a call for the endurance of the saints, those who keep the commandments of God and their faith in Jesus.
After the thousand year millennium, the devil is released for a time and then thrown into the eternal fire.
Rev 20:10 and the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.
So far, we see only the beast, the false prophet, the humans who took the mark of the beast, and the devil who deceived everyone in the eternal flames being tormented forever. Finally, there is the judgement day , also spoken of by the prophet Daniel, where all the dead are raised and brought before the righteousness judge.
Rev 20:11 Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them.
Rev 20:12 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done.
Rev 20:13 And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done.
Rev 20:14 Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire.
Rev 20:15 And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.
Can something be called a second death if the person lives forever being tormented in the flames? This is speculation, but I believe that the people who take the mark of the beast will be caused to be immortal in a way that Yahweh does not approve, much like the nephalim, who unnaturally became immortal as the illegitimate children of fallen angels and humans. Every other mortal that gets thrown in the fire will perish in the flames, because they have not received eternal life from repentance, or become immortal by the beast’s mark. However, repent and practice righteousness and you will not need to worry about perishing or burning forever. This is the hope we have and the good news.
Rev 21:1 Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more.
Rev 21:2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
Rev 21:3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God.
Rev 21:4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
Rev 21:5 And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”
Rev 21:6 And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment.
Rev 21:7 The one who conquers will have this heritage, and I will be his God and he will be my son.
Rev 21:8 But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.”