Assemblies of God, Ghana, Sunday School Manual Lesson 5

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Sincere repentance will bring genuine revival and victory.

Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen. He named it Ebenezer, saying, “Thus far has the LORD helped us.” 1 Samuel 7:12

That at the end of this lesson the student would be able to:
1. Explain the need for sincere repentance
2. Seek genuine repentance for victory

LESSON TEXT: 1 Samuel 7:3-13

A. A Godly Sorrow
B. Turning to God

A. Heartfelt Repentance
B. A Challenge from the Enemy
C. Prayer Offered

A. God’s Answer
B. A Thankful Testimony

A. God-Given Peace
B. A Faithful Judge and Priest

The events connected with the loss and recovery of the ark proved to be a blessing in disguise. Instead of meaning the downfall of Israel, they prepared the way for a great change. The self-seeking of Eli and the evil immorality of his sons were replaced by the patient teaching and prophetic, spiritual leadership of Samuel.
Samuel’s influence soon surpassed that of any of the previous judges. None of them had been able to minister to all twelve tribes. Even Deborah had to call down a curse on those who “came not to the help of the LORD” (Judges 5:23). Some judges ruled over only one tribe. But Samuel was a restorer of the whole land, calling for repentance and demanding spiritual reformation.
This was a time of near anarchy, a time when “every man did
that which was right in his own eyes” (Judges 17:6; 21:25). But through Samuel’s ministry the people began to see this was a miserable situation. God had something better for them, a great deliverance, a real revival.

1. What is Repentance, and who needs it?
Repentance means to turn from sin and evil and to turn to God. There must always be both parts. First Thessalonians 1:9 has a very succinct definition of repentance: “. .. how ye turned from idols to serve the living and true God.” Do you see the twofold concept? Acts 26:18 states: “To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins.”
The prodigal son repented. Some have said that the story in Luke 15 of the prodigal is the best example of repentance in the Word. He did not just feel sorry for himself and for his sin and for the swine pen, but he “came to himself” and he said, “I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven and before thee” (Luke 15:12-19).
John the Baptist preached repentance (Matthew 3:1, 2); Jesus preached it (Luke 13:3); Peter preached it on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:38); and Paul preached it (Acts 20:21).
2. Does public confession of sin have a place in our churches today? “Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” (James 5:16). Someone has said that we have just reversed the order: we confess other persons’ faults and we pray for ourselves!
A minister once said that we have been teaching this for a long time: “Practice what you preach” but he suggested a startling thought: “Why don’t you try preaching what you practice”. Here is what the Bible says: niv
3. “Now therefore make confession unto the Lord God of your fathers, and do his pleasure” (Ezra 10:11).
4. “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy” (Proverbs 28:13).
5. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).
The above verse in First John was written to Christians. Several years ago “Confession meetings” were abused. People confessed unimportant things. People confessed things which in turn hurt other people. And some persons took insidious delight in exposing things which were between them and God. But should public confession still have a place in the church community?

Mon. Wisdom for Leadership – Matt. 20:25-28.
Tue. Confidence in Leadership -1 Tim. 4:12.
Wed. Leadership without Hypocrisy – Rom. 12:9-13.
Thur. God appointed Leaders – Deut. 1:15-17.
Fri. Qualification for Leadership Defined – Exd. 18:21.
Sat. Learning the Humility of Christ – Phil. 2:5-8.

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