February 18, 2021
“Bear fruits in keeping with repentance. …I baptize you with water, but he who is mightier than I is coming, the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” Luke 3:8a and 16 ESV
John’s exhortation to the crowd conveys three key points regarding godly repentance. It is initiated by Christ through the Holy Spirit who leads us to the end of our own resources and exposes our feeble attempts to fix ourselves. Secondly, the Holy Spirit illuminates our minds with the sobering reality that we are unworthy of God’s favor (we can never be good enough), but there is One mightier than us who is worthy. Lastly, godly repentance will bear the fruit of the Holy Spirit: love replaces hate, self-control replaces compulsive behavior, joy replaces self-pity, and so on.
Father God, thank you for the gift of repentance. Help us to press into the sanctifying work of your Holy Spirit and bear fruit in keeping with repentance. Amen.
Rev. Gordon Green, M.Div., M.A. Counseling