God also has a special plan for induction. By following God’s plan you become part of His spiritual army. His plan centers on two important concepts, repentance and conversion, which result in justification.
In the natural world, when you join the army you have to deny any previous allegiance you have had to another army or country. In the same way, if you want to join God’s army, you have to repent of your allegiance to sin and leave the kingdom of Satan.
Repentance is a personal decision to change your allegiance to God. This change of mind results in a change in action but cannot be done through your own power. It is the power of God which actually brings the change in the mind, heart, and life of a sinner.
18 When the others heard this, they stopped objecting and began praising God. They said, “We can see that God has also given the Gentiles the privilege of repenting of their sins and receiving eternal life.” (Acts 11:18 NLT)
Repentance is not an emotion; it might involve emotions, but true repentance is a decision. Shedding tears and being sorry is not enough in itself. This must be accompanied by an inward decision that results in an outward change.
Judas was sorry, but Peter repented. When Peter denied Jesus three times even though he swore he would not, Peter was emotional.
75 Suddenly, Jesus’ words flashed through Peter’s mind: “Before the rooster crows, you will deny three times that you even know me.” And he went away, weeping bitterly. (Matthew 26:75 NLT)
Judas was also very emotional when he realized what he had done.
3 When Judas, who had betrayed him, realized that Jesus had been condemned to die, he was filled with remorse. (Matthew 27:3 NLT)
The difference between being sorry and true repentance was what they did afterward. Peter realised his mistake and made a decision.
22 “People of Israel, listen! God publicly endorsed Jesus the Nazarene by doing powerful miracles, wonders, and signs through him, as you well know.” (Acts 2:22 NLT)
Judas on the other hand acted out of emotion and never made the decision, he never repented of his sins.
5 Then Judas threw the silver coins down in the Temple and went out and hanged himself. (Matthew 27:5 NLT)
When you come to God and ask Him for forgiveness of your sins you experience “conversion.” Conversion means “to turn to something”. When we talk about conversion in connection with Biblical repentance, it means we are enlisting in the spiritual army of God. As repentance is turning from Satan’s kingdom conversion is joining the Kingdom of God.
Conversion must accompany repentance. As Jesus says in Matthew 18, it is necessary in order to enter into the Kingdom of God.
Then he said, “I tell you the truth, unless you turn from your sins and become like little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven. (Matthew 18:3 NLT)
Through our own enlistment, our own conversion to the Kingdom of God we can raise up others and literally save them from spiritual death.
My dear brothers and sisters, if someone among you wanders away from the truth and is brought back, you can be sure that whoever brings the sinner back from wandering will save that person from death and bring about the forgiveness of many sins. (James 5:19-20 NLT)
Justification & Salvation
There are two other terms used in the Bible which relate to repentance. These terms are "justification" and "salvation." God is the judge of all mankind. When you are living in sin you are condemned before Him. Unpleasant, but a fact. When you repent from sin and make the decision to turn to Him, you establish a right relationship with God. This right relationship or right standing before God is called "justification":
Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living. Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you wholeheartedly obey this teaching we have given you. Now you are free from your slavery to sin, and you have become slaves to righteous living. (Romans 6:16-18 NLT)
When you are justified you are saved from a life of sin as well as from the penalties of sin. This is what it means to be "saved" and what the Bible is speaking of when the term "salvation" is used.
SPIRITUAL WARFARE AND THE BIBLICAL WORLD VIEW
In order to understand spiritual warfare we have to look at it within the context of God's purpose, the redemption of mankind. In the parables of the sower (Matthew 13:1-23) and the parable of the tares among wheat (Matthew 13:24-30), both parables concern the growth of the Kingdom of God through the planting of God's Word. Both parables picture the warfare between the two kingdoms with the battle centering on the redemption God grants us.
Learning spiritual warfare prepares you to enter the battle and fight for the growth of God’s Kingdom and the souls of men and women. To move with authority and share the Gospel:
Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20)
Satan and his hosts of demons will war against you as you seek to win people to Christ and bring them into God’s Kingdom. Using Scriptural strategies of spiritual warfare helps you challenge the principalities and powers who rule over individual human lives, societies, and areas of the world.
INDUCTION INTO GOD'S ARMY
Repentance leads to conversion which results in justification and salvation. This is God's plan for induction into His army. If you have not enlisted into God's army, you need to stop right now and do the following:
-Repent of your sins. (If you are not sure how then contact a local pastor and they will help you.).
- Ask Jesus to forgive you.
- Accept Him as your Lord and Savior.
-Turn to God and ask for His help to live out His plans (be converted).
Welcome to the army of God!