Full text of renowned Bible teacher Derek Prince’s Laying The Foundation Series Part 3 titled “Through Repentance To Faith” which was recorded in New Zealand, December 1994.
Listen to the MP3 Audio here:
“I’ve discovered a lot of people have hope when they think they have faith. Faith is here and now; hope is for the future. Faith is a substance, something so real that it’s called a substance. It’s in our hearts. And on the basis of faith, we can have a legitimate hope for the future. But any hope that is not based on legitimate faith is just wishful thinking. But bear in mind, faith is a substance in our hearts. It’s right there right now.”
Derek Prince – Bible teacher
For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,
teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously and godly in the present age,
looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,
who gave Himself for us that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.Titus 2: 11-14
And if you wonder what God is going to get out of history, why He tolerates the wickedness, and the injustice and the suffering so long?
The answer is: God is going to get a people for Himself. That’s God’s ultimate objective in the present age.
Now we’re going to turn to the third session of ‘Laying the Foundation’, and the title of this message is: THROUGH REPENTANCE TO FAITH.
I want to say right at the beginning there is no other way to faith except through repentance. Any other way that claims to get you there is a deception. True faith is impossible without repentance.
Let me go back now and remind you briefly of what we have been studying together.
First of all, the foundation of the Christian faith, the personal foundation, is Jesus Christ. And everyone who is to be a true Christian has to build his or her life on that foundation. And I suggested to you that the confrontation between Jesus and Peter, when Peter declared ‘You are the Christ, the Messiah, the Son of the living God’, is a pattern of what needs to happen in each one of our lives in its own particular way.
I said there were four elements in that encounter. Number one, confrontation. Jesus and Peter stood face to face, there was no mediator, no priest, no third person in between them.
Second, there was a revelation given by the Spirit of God of the eternal identity of Jesus, not the carpenter’s son, but the Son of the living God.
Thirdly, Peter received and acknowledged that revelation. He didn’t refuse it, he embraced it.
And fourthly, he made a public confession of his faith.
And those, I believe, are the elements that must be at the basis of every really successful Christian life. Confrontation, revelation, acknowledgment and confession.
And then we looked at the very important practical question: Once you’ve laid this foundation, how do you build on it? And from the parable of the wise and the foolish man, which Jesus told, we saw that building on this foundation, first of all, consists in acknowledging the Bible as the written Word of God and Jesus as the living Word, and hearing and doing what Jesus said. So, building on the foundation, is hearing and doing what Jesus said.
Then we looked at the authority and the power of God’s Word. I pointed out that the word authority comes from the word author. So, the authority of any book depends on the author. The authority of the Bible depends on the author, and the author is the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God, God Himself. So the authority of God is in the Bible.
And then I pointed out that there we have the Word in two forms: the written word, and the personal word. Jesus, the Word of God made flesh. And I tied this in with your personal relationship to the Bible. I said, and I say it again: You do not love God more than you love His Word. You do not obey God more than you obey His Word.
If you want to find out what place God has in your life, find out what place the Bible has, because they are the same. The Bible is the written Word; Jesus is the personal Word. Through the written Word, the personal Word comes into our lives.
THE DOCTRINAL FOUNDATION OF THE CHRISTIAN FAITH
Now I want to go on today by discussing the doctrinal foundation. We’ve looked at the personal foundation which is Jesus Christ.
But the New Testament also reveals that there is a doctrinal foundation. This is a revelation which has escaped the notice of millions of Christians but it is very clearly stated in Hebrews chapter 6, verses 1 through 3. We’ll turn there now.
Hebrews 6:1-3: which says: Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles — [or the basic truths] — of Christ, let us go on to perfection — [completion or maturity] — not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, of the doctrine of baptisms, of laying on of hands, of resurrection of the dead and of eternal judgment. And this we will do if God permits.
Now there are two thoughts there which you have to combine. First of all, it’s essential to lay the foundation. If you’ve never laid the foundation you can never do the building. But once you have really laid the foundation, then don’t keep re-laying the foundation but go on to a complete building. Those are the two combined thoughts.
But you’ll see in Hebrews 6:1 it says the foundation. This is the doctrinal foundation of the Christian faith, and it lists six doctrines which I will go through again.
Number one, repentance from dead works.
Number two, faith toward God.
Number three, the doctrine of baptisms, plural.
Number four, the laying on of hands.
Number five, resurrection of the dead.
And number six, eternal judgment.
And if you follow that through, you’ll see it takes us from the very starting point of the Christian faith to its ultimate fulfillment in eternity. And it’s very important to see that the Christian faith does not terminate in time; it does not terminate in this life or this world. It takes us beyond this world, beyond time into eternity.