We need salvation from so many things: sins, the self, the world.
But did you realize that Matthew begins, not with the matter of sins, but with this: “repent for the kingdom… (Matt. 3:2).”
Not only did John the Baptist begin his gospel preaching with, “Repent, for the kingdom of the heavens,” but Jesus began His earthly ministry with the same words (Matt. 4:17).
We like to preach the gospel of our need for remission of sins, but God begins the gospel with His need, the kingdom.
He spoke this word, “Repent.” To repent means to “have a change of mind issuing in regret, to have a turn in purpose.”
Repent of what? Of our not submitting to the rule of God.
Before our salvation, we were under the authority of governments, under the authority of parents and even under the rule of Satan, but not under the divine authority. We need to repent of not submitting to the sovereignty of God.
Today, can we say that we are under the ruling of Christ?
We may have His life within us and love Him, but not be under His ruling.
We have already been transferred out of darkness into the kingdom of Christ. But, in our daily living, we may lack the reality of living in the kingdom.
- To Him who loves us and has released us from our sins by His blood and made us a kingdom (Rev. 1:5-6).
The reason God washed us in the precious blood was that we might be brought under His government.
Why? This is God’s need.
For more on the kingdom: