Accepting the Conviction
“…. today if you will hear his voice, harden not your hearts” ~ Hebrews 4:7
The story of Zacchaeus in Luke 19 is a beautiful record of true repentance. Zacchaeus did not argue, justify or reason with Jesus about what he was doing. He did not get into a lengthy discussion nor skirt the issue of repentance. He accepted the conviction of his sin and decided to change his character. He submitted his will to the will of God, which resulted in a change in his conduct – he promised to give away half of his possessions to the poor who could not give him anything in return. And he was willing to restore fourfold to those whom he had accused falsely. What a tremendous change! That is true repentance. A change… a transformation from deep within the heart and will.
When God convicts us of some sin, we must accept it. Certainly as the Bible says no discipline is enjoyable at that time, but later on it yields a harvest of righteousness for those trained by it. God does not control us like puppets. He has given us the gift of free will; so that we can choose what to do and not to do. In that sense we are the masters of our own will. It is entirely at our disposal. In repentance the first thing is to accept the conviction that God brings about within us concerning a sin or wrong doing. God in his love reaches out to help us take the right track. But we must obey Him and do what He says.
Friend, what is important is how our sin or wrong doing is seen by God’s eyes and not by man’s eyes or in the world’s eyes. Human nature and the world around us is constantly changing. Only God is constant. And so is His word too. What has been deemed by God to be sin is sin for always. There are no two sides to this. Let’s hearken when God speaks to us through that still small voice.
“Dear Jesus, You are truly the Good Shepherd who leads me in paths of righteousness. Help me hearken and obey when you speak. May my heart be open to Your working always. Amen.”