Chapter 13 begins with a teaching which the editors of my NIV translation titles “Repent or Perish.” Mentioning a mass murder Jesus asked if the people thought those who died in that horrendous way were guiltier than other people. “I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish” (3). Next discussing a tragic accident where a building collapses and people die, Jesus again asks the people if they think that those who died in that way were more guilty than other people. And again Jesus replies in the same way. “I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish” (5).
From God’s perspective all people have broken His laws and need to repent or they will perish.
That’s a pretty stark word but it is also very clear, gradations of guilty are not the issue. What matters to God is whether we repent. Both cases of the ‘you’ in verses 3 and 5 is plural. Jesus is looking over everyone saying ‘You’ as in ‘You-all’ must repent.
Repent –acknowledge that we have broken God’s law of loving God and neighbors wholly –and asking God to forgive us as we turn 180 degrees and change our lives. We begin walking toward Jesus and His will and way rather than away from Jesus. We follow Jesus as Lord and seek to please Him rather than self.
Repentance is required of everyone if we want to avoid perishing.
That’s Jesus’ word…
Question is, have you repented?
Lord Jesus, thank You for making my need clear. I turn to You. I repent. Please forgive my wrongs and show me the way to live that honors You and the forgiveness You have rendered to me. I pray this acknowledging that You Father, Jesus, and Holy Spirit are my God and I now live to honor You. Through Jesus, my Lord, I pray. Amen.