by James Merritt

Turn Right with the Right Turn
James Merritt
Luke 13:1-8


1. The late George Gallup, Sr. did a nationwide poll and discovered one of the most bewildering paradoxes of his career. He discovered that religious interest is growing at an unprecedented rate, but so is immoral behavior. Gallup's poll revealed: ''Little difference between those who go to church and those who don.t''1

2. Now what Gallup discovered is what many people, both inside and outside of the church, deep down know in their hearts. There really is little difference between most people who go to church and most people who don't. But the question is: ''Why?'' Why isn't there more of a difference between the average person who goes to church and the average person who doesn't? Well, I believe I can give the answer in one word- repentance.

3. Now I know to the average man in the street, the word ''repent'' is almost a religious joke word. Whenever a cartoonist wants to depict a narrow-minded religious fanatic, he will draw a person holding a sandwich board sign-up with the words ''Repent, You Sinner, Repent!'' But even though the world makes light of this word, Jesus said something about repentance that chills me to my bones, and makes me realize that repentance is no laughing matter, and it is certainly no joke. ''I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.'' (v.3)

4. Let me tell you what that statement means. It means the death of Jesus, the blood of Jesus, and the cross of Jesus is absolutely worthless to you if you do not repent. The death of Jesus Christ cannot cure one sin in one sinner, if that sinner refuses to repent. The blood of Jesus Christ cannot cleanse one sin of one sinner if that sinner refuses to repent. The cross of Jesus Christ cannot cancel one sin of one sinner if that sinner refuses to repent.

5. It doesn't matter what else you do; it doesn't matter how well you do it. Jesus said, ''Unless you repent you will all likewise per ...

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