English Standard Version (ESV)
It's remarkably clear, isn't it? Repent and be baptized. Peter issues the call, and thousands of years later, the church's cry is the same -- repent and be baptized. The message hasn't changed much, but the world around us has. Any more, the message of the world is that everyone is ok and all this talk of sin is such a downer. I'm okay, you're okay, and we'll just whistle as we wander past the graveyard -- who wants to dwell on the negative?
I drove by a graveyard the other day, and it sent chills up my spine. I am a temporary resident of this planet, and I can choose how I want to spend my time. When I look forward, should my energy be devoted to building up my own kingdom, or should I rather invest in something permanent, something eternal, knowing that doing so requires me to admit that I am sinful and in need of repair?
In the grand scheme of things, one day I will break down, beyond the point where modern medicine can fix me. In that moment, do I want to be sorrowful that my efforts to build monuments for myself will never be completed, or do I want to be grateful that I took part in the greatest epic of all, that I contributed to the construction of an eternal kingdom that will have no end, even though doing so required that I empty myself of pride and took on humility in order to do so?
I know what my choice is. Here, Peter is inviting the crowd to make their own. What is your choice?