Repentance - I Samuel 7:2-6
Rev. Dr. Ernest Brodie Jr.
 
Israel suffered a major defeat and loss. Everyone experiences defeat at some time.  It is what we do with it or what it does to us. Defeat can cause us to give up, try harder, or at the very least re-evaluate our lives. When defeat occurs in our lives, it is time for a re-evaluation: What is God trying to tell me? What did I do wrong? What should I have done differently? How is my relationship with God?
 
Reasons for defeat:
1.  Satanic attack - Job.
2.  Wickedness of mankind - Enslavement of the Jews in Egypt.
3.  Spiritual and moral failures on our part (weight of sin). Hebrews 12:1-11: “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds. Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin. And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons. Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness. Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.”
 
The key question is why was Israel defeated? (1 Samuel 7:2-6) They already knew the answer was sin. In 1 Samuel 7:2, all of the nation of Israel cried out to the LORD.  Revival starts with repentance which means to change one’s mind. 2 Corinthians 7:10:“For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.”
 
Samuel outlines what the nation of Israel must do (I Samuel 7:1-4).  This is a twenty-year process.
 
1. Return unto the Lord with all your hearts (verse 3).
Psalm 80:14-19: “Return, we beseech thee, O God of hosts: look down from heaven, and behold, and visit this vine; And the vineyard which thy right hand hath planted, and the branch that thou madest strong for thyself.  It is burned with fire, it is cut down: they perish at the rebuke of thy countenance. Let thy hand be upon the man of thy right hand, upon the son of man whom thou madest strong for thyself.  So will not we go back from thee: quicken us, and we will call upon thy name.  Turn us again, O Lord God of hosts, cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.”
 
2. Put away the strange gods (verse 3).
Luke 16:10-12: “He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.  If therefore ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches?  And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man's, who shall give you that which is your own?”
 
3. Prepare your hearts unto the Lord (verse 3).
Revelation 3:14-22: “And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;  I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.  So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:  I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.  As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.  Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.  To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.”
 
4. Serve God only (verse 3).
Matthew 6:23-25: “But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!  No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.  Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?”
1 Timothy 1:15-20: “This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting.  Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen. This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare;  Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck:  Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme.”
 
Life apart from God leads one into dangerous waters where many are shipwrecked.