Now is the time - 19 January 2018

Neville Turley

“The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!”  Mark 1:15 (NIV)

Throughout his ministry Jesus focussed his attention on communicating God’s good news. It was his constant theme and one we must carry forward. 

Jesus began his earthly ministry in Galilee. He was spiritually well prepared for it. 

Like many people from Judea and the city of Jerusalem, Jesus had gone to John the Baptist to be baptised. As he came out of the water, Jesus saw heaven opening up and the Holy Spirit came upon him. The he heard the Father say: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” (Mark 1:11 (NIV))

Immediately thereafter, the Holy Spirit led him to the desert. There he stayed 40 days praying and fasting. He was enticed by the devil but Jesus used the Word of God to counter the devil’s temptations. 

On hearing that John had been imprisoned Jesus knew the time had come for him to fulfil his mission. He went to Galilee where he began proclaiming the good news of God.

The words of Jesus in our verse today is as relevant for us as it was when he first preached it. Jesus' forerunner, John, had prepared the way for him by also urging people to “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.” (Matthew 3:2)

The word repent occurs 56 times in the New Testament. Repent does not merely mean to be sorry and regret your wrongs.  It goes further than that, it entails turning away from your sins and never committing them again.

This gracious invitation from Christ reveals that men and women are made to follow God. However, they need to get their priorities right. 

Real repentance involves changing from a worldly attitude and outlook and focussing on the divine. It means turning to God in Jesus Christ and letting him take control of your life. 

If you are not doing so, there is no better time to begin than now.

Prayer:  Father forgive us for all the things we do that grieve you. Through your Holy Spirit strengthen our faith for Jesus sake.  Amen


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