#1,137 – Turn, Repent, and Believe the Gospel (Ezekiel 14:6)

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Therefore say to the house of Israel, “Thus says the Lord God, ‘Repent and turn away from your idols and turn away your faces from all your abominations.'”
-Ezekiel 14:6

Oh, this is the central message, not just of Ezekiel. This is the central message of the Bible. Ever since sin enters the world, God is calling people to repent. This is the message, Jesus came, where this is the gospel message, repent, and believe the gospel. Mark 1:15, “Turn away from sin, turn away from idols, turn away your faces from all your abominations.” And the problem here in Ezekiel is God’s people were not responding to that command. They had grown comfortable with their sin and their idolatry, and they were turning away from God instead of turning away from sin to God.

The central message of the Bible is that God has called his people to turn away from their sin and turn towards God.

And so, as we pray Ezekiel 14:6 today, I want to encourage you, even as I’m going to do the same. Obviously it’s a unique way to do this via podcast, but I want to encourage us, even have some time in this prayer, just to pause and specifically repent of idols in our lives, of sin, of abominations, just any and everything in our lives that is not pure and holy. Any and everywhere where God is not reigning supreme in our hearts, where we have put even good things above God. That’s part of what idolatry is, elevating good things to a level they don’t belong as ultimate things, enjoying gifts while ignoring the giver.

So just think in your life as we pray, Oh God, we here today, whenever we’re listening to this, whether it’s early in the morning or late at night or somewhere in between, would we hear Your call right now to repent, from Your Word? And so we pray that You would help us right now to repent, to turn from sin, to turn from idols. That even right now in our hearts, You would open our eyes. What are You calling us to repent of?

And God, I want to give in just a few seconds here, and I trust that this may lead to longer time before You, but God we repent of and let’s just fill in the blank in our prayers before God. Let’s just pause right now and say to Him in our hearts, “We repent of, we turn from.”

Oh God, we repent of sin and idolatry in different ways. We praise you, Jesus, for paying the price for all of our sins. Jesus, we praise you for the privilege of repentance, for the power to repent, to be cleansed of sin, to turn from it, to experience your victory over it.

By the power of Your Spirit in us, God, we pray that You’d help us to live in continual repentance, in a continual turning from sin and a continual trusting in You and following You. God, when we fall into temptation or sin, help us to run from it, repent immediately by Your grace. God, help us to live with love for You with all our heart and all our soul and all our mind and all our strength. God, we praise You for Your grace. We praise You for Your forgiveness. We praise You for the new life we have in Jesus. We praise You for the gospel and we pray that You would help us to live in the fullness of this message.

We pray that You’d help us to live walking by faith, continually turning from sin, enjoying Your grace for Your glory in our lives. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.

David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and chairman of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, Counter Culture, and Something Needs to Change.
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