ANNOUNCEMENT:

Repentance7 Minute Read

Repent ye therefore, and be converted...

When Jesus began His ministry, He preached the doctrine of repentance.

Matthew 4:17 - From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

John the Baptist required repentance of those who came to him to be baptized.

Luke 3:3, 8 - [3] And he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins; [8] Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to [our] father: for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.

What is the definition of repent?

'To feel self-reproach, compunction, or contrition for past conduct: to turn, turn away, or turn towards: feel regret, or change one's mind, with regard to past action in consequence of dissatisfaction with it or its result.'

Isaiah also defines repentance:

Isaiah 55:7 - Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.

Jesus commanded all men to repent.

Mark 1:15 - And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.

The apostles commanded sinners to repent.

Acts 2:38 - Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

Acts 3:19 - Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;

Acts 17:30 - And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:

Repentance is required of everyone no matter how good or self-righteous they might be.

Luke 13:1-5 - There were present at that season some that told him of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.

Why?

Romans 3:23 - For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Repentance implies real godly sorrow.

Luke 18:10-14 - Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men [are], extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as [his] eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified [rather] than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

a) True godly sorrow is not the sorrow of the world.

II Corinthians 7:8-11 - For though I made you sorry with a letter, I do not repent, though I did repent: for I perceive that the same epistle hath made you sorry, though [it were] but for a season. Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing. For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death. For behold this selfsame thing, that ye sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you, yea, [what] clearing of yourselves, yea, [what] indignation, yea, [what] fear, yea, [what] vehement desire, yea, [what] zeal, yea, [what] revenge! In all [things] ye have approved yourselves to be clear in this matter.

Psalms 51:17 - The sacrifices of God [are] a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.

b) When the prodigal son returned home, he exemplified godly sorrow. (humility) Luke 15:21

The Spirit of God must first convict man of his sins before man can repent.

John 6:44 - No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

John 16:8 - And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:

Sins need not be confessed before men.

They must be confessed to God who alone has power to forgive sins.

I John 1:9 - If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Confession of wrongs and seeking forgiveness must be made to men who have been wronged.

Matthew 5:23-24 - Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.

This produces a good conscience toward men as well as toward God.

Acts 24:16 - And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offence toward God, and [toward] men.

Repentance requires that restitution be made.

Ezekiel 33:15 - [If] the wicked restore the pledge, give again that he had robbed, walk in the statutes of life, without committing iniquity; he shall surely live, he shall not die.

Restitution was one of the first things that Zacchaeus thought of after he met Jesus Christ.

Luke 19:8 - And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore [him] fourfold.

Repentance includes forgiving others.

All hatred, malice, grudges, ill-feelings toward others must be forsaken and those persons forgiven.

Matthew 6:14-15 - For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: but if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

Jesus is our example.

Luke 23:34 - Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.

The act of repentance is two-fold.

It means not only the turning away from sin (Ezekiel 33:11,14) but also the turning to God for forgiveness (Proverbs 28:13).

Isaiah 55:7 - Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.

As a man turns from sin and seeks God a great feeling of humility and unworthiness overwhelms him.

II Corinthians 7:11 - For behold this selfsame thing, that ye sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you, yea, [what] clearing of yourselves, yea, [what] indignation, yea, [what] fear, yea, [what] vehement desire, yea, [what] zeal, yea, [what] revenge! In all [things] ye have approved yourselves to be clear in this matter.

Those that have truly repented -- been converted (justified, saved, pardoned, redeemed, born again, etc.) need no repentance.

Luke 15:7 - I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.

Matthew 9:13 - But go ye and learn what [that] meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.