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Working as a Believer

Cops Understand the Importance of ACTION

Cops Understand the Importance of ACTION
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“Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.” (Mark 1:14-15).

I share Mark 1:15 on a near-daily basis. This passage is part of Jesus’ first recorded words of His earthly ministry. It is central to Jesus’ mission – and my own calling as a preacher/evangelist. But I’m not sure if I’ve written an article on this passage. While whole books have been written on this single verse, my prayer is that this article will summarize some important truths. Let’s dig in. This passage is part of Jesus' first recorded words of His earthly ministry. It is central to Jesus' mission Share on X

Mark’s first direct quote of Jesus during His time as God in flesh (God “with skin on”) is the announcement that God’s kingdom has arrived. The gospel (the word simply means the “Good News”) message includes a sense of urgency (as in the “Code 3” — lights and siren — sense of urgency I share so often), especially with Jesus live and in-person among those He taught. Jesus is now physically on the scene fulfilling the Father’s words among His people (Galatians 4:4). Scholars number hundreds of prophecies in the Old Testament about the Savior’s birth, death and Resurrection (overwhelming EVIDENCE). But, despite this, the Jews had a very inaccurate idea of what the Kingdom of God was and what the Messiah would do for them. They believed the Messiah would lead them into political independence, civil peace, and personal prosperity. They wanted a military champion as the Lion of Judah while rejecting the Lamb of God (John 1:29, Revelation 5:5-6).

John the Baptist’s message was to repent and believe that salvation was coming. Jesus’ message is to repent and believe in the salvation that is now here. To repent, from the Greek metanoeo, is to change one’s mind and agree that one’s sins are abhorrent. It is not only remorse for sin but also a changed attitude that chooses to live for God. To believe, from the Greek pisteuo, means to be fully convinced, to wholly trust (in faith, in Christ alone). To “believe” and to “repent” go hand in hand — two sides of the same coin. It is impossible to fully believe in Jesus’ message of salvation and not turn away from our sins (1 John 3:4–6). Christians will never be perfect on this earth, but our inclination to live a sinful life must, by definition, radically change into a desire to live “all in” for Christ as Lord and Savior.

And the word “gospel” (or Gospel)? It simply means the “good news” or Good News (other translations use those words in place of “gospel”). In his excellent commentary, pastor and theologian David Guzik shared this:

Saying… “Repent”: When Jesus preached the gospel of the kingdom of God, He wanted people to know what entering that kingdom was like. They could not enter the kingdom going the same way they had been going. They had to change their direction to experience the kingdom of God. Some people think that repentance is mostly about feelings, especially feeling sorry for your sin. It is wonderful to feel sorry about your sin, but repent isn’t a “feelings” word. It is an action word. Jesus told us to make a change of the mind, not merely to feel sorry for what we have done. Repentance speaks of a change of direction, not a sorrow in the heart. Repentance does not describe something we must do before we come to God; it describes what coming to God is like. If you are in New York, and I tell you to come to Los Angeles, I don’t really need to say “Leave New York and come to Los Angeles.” To come to Los Angeles is to leave New York, and if I haven’t left New York, I certainly can’t come to Los Angeles. We can’t come to the kingdom of God unless we leave our sin and the self-life. Saying… “Believe”: When Jesus preached the gospel of the kingdom of God, He wanted people to know what it was like to live in the kingdom. The kingdom Jesus preached was not just about a moral renewal. It was about trusting God, taking Him at His word, and living a relationship of dependence on Him. The ancient Greek word Jesus used for believe (pisteuo) means much more than knowledge or agreement in the mind. It speaks of a relationship of trust and dependence.

And the late G. Campbell Morgan, another famous Bible expositor and prolific author, wrote:

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“There are many people who believe the Gospel, but they do not believe in it. It was an appeal not only to accept it as an intellectually accurate statement; but to rest in it, to repose in it. It was a call to let the heart find ease in it.”

Even the devil and his demons “believe in it” (mere belief), but they will never pisteuo – wholly trust in/give their allegiance to the One who ultimately wrote it (all Scripture being “God-breathed” – 2 Timothy 3:16-17).

Most of the New Testament is written to believers – those who have answered God’s call to “repent and believe” in Christ alone as Lord and Savior. But here in Mark, Jesus is in fact The Evangelist calling the lost (the unsaved, including unsaved police officers) to repentance and salvation through a right relationship with Him. So, do YOU have that today? Do YOU “believe” in Christ alone to save you? Do YOU know your ultimate destiny if, God forbid, something terrible happened to you today before the end of your shift? If not, I echo my Savior’s call to “repent and believe” — to be born again (John 3:1-21) in Him alone (John 14:6, Acts 4:12 — no “other” way).

Michael "MC" Williams is a 35-year law enforcement veteran who recently retired at the rank of Detective/Criminal Investigator. MC continues to write, train and present to law enforcement professionals and others around the country. He's the founder and director of the Centurion Law Enforcement Ministry (

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Lt. (Ret.) M.C. Williams

    February 20, 2024 at 6:30 am

    Thanks to J. Warner Wallace/The Thin Blue Life for publishing this. And if anyone reading this needs help/prayer or has questions, please reach out:

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