December 1

Today's Bible Reading
     I Chronicles 29
     II Peter 3
     Micah 6
     Luke 15
            ''The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance." (II Peter 3:9)
            This true story will break your heart. I am aware of the account of a man who had been a Department Director of his college, and had served ably and successfully for a number of years. He did his work so well that the Board of Trustees named him as a finalist in their search for the new President of the school. Then a routine background check was made on him. The shocking news came. No documentation could be found for the man's Master's and Doctoral Degrees. He did not have the right credentials. When he was told about the problem in a special meeting, he excused himself to get his transcripts - and never came back.
            It is a sad thing that many people are expecting to be in Heaven someday, but they just do not have the right credentials. Your religion will not get you to Heaven and your ritual will fail you at the time of the Rapture. If that is all you have, you are a counterfeit Christian. I am convinced that many of the problems we face in our churches today are because we have multitudes of unregenerate church members. They are counterfeits, and they do not have the right credentials for Heaven.
Did you take note ofour memory verse? God is not willing that any should perish, but that every single person He has created would go to Heaven.  He makes it very clear, however, that the right credentials include repentance.
We live in a day of easy believe-ism and cheap grace.  We have told an entire generation that all they have to do is read a booklet and pray a prayer, and they will be all right. Repentance is never mentioned,yet repentance is absolutely essential for eternal life.
You need to understand that repentance is not merely sorrow. It is not penance. Jesus did not say ''do penance and believe in the Gospel." It is not reformation. Reformation is a change brought about by the  efforts of man for self­ glorification such as turning away from known sin, giving up a bad habit, trying to refine the old nature, turning over a new leaf, and making restitution. Repentance is not complicated or complex. Repentance does, however, allow us to see ourselves as we really are. Repentance means a change, always evidenced in three elements: 
            Intellectual element: a change of mind
            Emotional element: a change of heart 
            Volitional element: a change of will
Your credentials must be faith, repentance, and confession which results in an appetite for the Word and obedience toGod.
            Pray today for a special group of people, the Sunda, who live in West Java. This group professes Islam, but is highly influenced by underlying animism and tradition al Sunda beliefs. Christian Sunda numbers about 12,000 but many of these are nominal, and are isolated in the Muslim majority. The largest Christi an body of believers, the Pasunda Church, was begun many years ago as primarily Sunda, but now is a mixture of ethnic groups. Pray that the increasing interest in the Gospel may result in an abundant harvest among these 35 million people.
''Humility is to make a right estimate of oneself."
Charles Spurgeon