Repentance - What is Repentance? What does it mean to Repent? Is Repentance Necessary for Salvation? Videos, Articles by: John MacArthur, Cross TVs Mark Kielar, Got Questions. Biblical Repentance means “to change one’s mind” which will result in a change of Actions— a changed Life. God Grants Repentance Scriptures: 2 Timothy 2:23-26, Acts 5:30-31, Acts 11:17.
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GOD GRANTS PEOPLE REPENTANCE - SCRIPTURES:
2 Timothy 2:23-26, Acts 5:30-31, Acts 11:17
How to Recognize True Repentance Don Green - Truth Matters 2011 w/ John MacArthur
QUOTE by Pastor Don Green, Managing Director of "Grace To You" (www.GTY.org) "HAVE YOU REPENTED? Your REPENTANCE is GENUINE when you MOURN over your SIN and Consciously SEPARATE yourself from the WORLD and its FALSE RELIGION, PHILOSOPHIES, and LUSTS. You REJECT your own SINFUL SELF and the very environment in which you live in order to give TOTAL ALLEGIANCE TO JESUS CHRIST in a new pursuit of BIBLICAL RIGHTEOUSNESS. That is REPENTANCE. You leave yourself behind in TRUE REPENTANCE. You give UNCONDITIONAL SURRENDER to the LORDSHIP OF CHRIST, freely acknowledging: “I have no righteousness of my own. I am a lost sinner unable to reconcile myself to God. Christ the Lord must save me or I will suffer eternal doom.” You come as a BANKRUPT, DESPERATE SPIRITUAL BEGGAR to FOLLOW CHRIST or you do NOT come to Him at all."
MORE excellent Bible Teaching by Pastor Don Green (Don Green is Managing Director of www.GTY.org & one of the Pastors at John MacArthur's Church: Grace Community Church, CA) here: www.GraceLifePulpit/DonGreen.aspx
In the Bible, the word repent means “to change one’s mind.” The Bible also tells us that true repentance will result in a change of actions (Luke 3:8-14; Acts 3:19). Acts 26:20 declares, “I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds.” The full biblical definition of repentance is a change of mind that results in a change of action.
What, then, is the connection between repentance and salvation? The Book of Acts seems to especially focus on repentance in regards to salvation (Acts 2:38; Acts 3:19; Acts 11:18; Acts 17:30; Acts 20:21; Acts 26:20). To repent, in relation to salvation, is to change your mind in regard to Jesus Christ. In Peter’s sermon on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2), he concludes with a call for the people to repent (Acts 2:38). Repent from what? Peter is calling the people who rejected Jesus (Acts 2:36) to change their minds about Him, to recognize that He is indeed “Lord and Christ” (Acts 2:36). Peter is calling the people to change their minds from rejection of Christ as the Messiah to faith in Him as both Messiah and Savior.
Repentance and Faith can be understood as “two sides of the same coin.” It is impossible to place your faith in Jesus Christ as the Savior without first changing your mind about who He is and what He has done. Whether it is repentance from willful rejection or repentance from ignorance or disinterest, it is a change of mind. Biblical repentance, in relation to salvation, is changing your mind from rejection of Christ to faith in Christ.
It is crucially important that we understand repentance is not a work we do to earn salvation. No one can repent and come to God unless God pulls that person to Himself (John 6:44). Acts 5:31 and Acts 11:18 indicate that repentance is something God gives—it is only possible because of His grace. No one can repent unless God grants repentance. All of salvation, including repentance and faith, is a result of God drawing us, opening our eyes, and changing our hearts. God's longsuffering leads us to repentance (2 Peter 3:9), as does His kindness (Romans 2:4).
While repentance is not a work that earns salvation, repentance unto salvation does result in works. It is impossible to truly and fully change your mind without that causing a change in action. In the Bible, repentance results in a change in behavior. That is why John the Baptist called people to “produce fruit in keeping with repentance” (Matthew 3:8). A person who has truly repented from rejection of Christ to faith in Christ will give evidence of a changed life (2 Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 5:19-23; James 2:14-26). Repentance, properly defined, is necessary for salvation. Biblical repentance is changing your mind about Jesus Christ and turning to God in faith for salvation (Acts 3:19). Turning from sin is not the definition of repentance, but it is one of the results of genuine, faith-based repentance towards the Lord Jesus Christ.
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A person can become confused these days about how to be saved. It seems two of the most common verses of Scripture used in these latter days on how to be saved are the following.
Some preachers seem to indicate that nothing else is necessary other than saying a prayer. They seem to indicate this by saying nothing about one thing that is an absolute necessity for salvation. That absolute is "repentance."
Another verse many people stand on for salvation is Acts 16:31 "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved." Again, many seem to stand on this verse alone for salvation without mentioning the necessity of repenting of sin. James 2:19 tells us "You believe that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble."
In John 12:42-43, we are shown that among the chief rulers MANY believed on Jesus, yet they were not saved. As it is written, "Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue:
For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God."
Some people may say, you have to do nothing to be saved except believe and say a sinner's prayer. This is not true. Two absolutes you must do are: repent of your sins and confess Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, as the only hope you have of being saved. Yes, we are to call on the name of the Lord in prayer. Yes, we are to believe that Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God, God in the flesh. Yes, we are to believe that He died for our sins, and rose from the dead, and now sits at the right hand of God the Father. Yes, we are to believe that Jesus Christ is the Living Word and that He came to earth to redeem men from their sins. But to say that all we are to do is call on the name of the Lord and believe on Him is not all that God’s Word requires. We must repent of our sins, forsake our sins, and even more, we must never be ashamed of Jesus. We are to be willing to stand up for Jesus and be willing to confess Him.
God’s Word is showing us clearly that to ask and believe is not all that is necessary for salvation.
This most important thing that every person "must" do or there is no hope of salvation is often ignored in many churches and by many preachers. This absolute is the very first word that Peter is recorded saying when he was asked by the people what they must do. Jesus Christ is recorded 7 times in the 4 Gospels as saying that a person must do this one thing. God’s program is centered around trying to get men to do this one thing. What is this incredibly important thing that is so often left out by so many preachers, priests, and rabbi? What is this most important thing that even some of the best of the television evangelists often seem to forget to include? Let Jesus Christ tell us from Luke’s Gospel chapter 13, verse 3 and 5- "I Tell you: But except you REPENT, You shall all likewise Perish.. Again, in verse 5, Jesus repeats - I tell you: But, except you Repent, You shall all likewise Perish."
John the Baptist made it very clear, as he said, REPENT, AND BELIEVE THE GOSPEL - Mark 1:15.
Salvation depends upon faith that involves repentance. It may be said, as a result of believing or as a result of faith, repentance takes place. When a person truly believes the Gospel in his heart, repentance is the result. Thus, to believe includes repentance. Repentance then may be said to be the evidence of turning from unbelief to belief of God's Word. John the Baptist said, PRODUCE FRUIT IN KEEPING WITH REPENTANCE-Mt 3:8 NIV.
However, when unbelief sets in, a turning away from God occurs.
Repentance may be defined in this manner. It is a total sacrifice and surrender of oneself to obey and submit to the Word of God in all situations. Anything short of this is sin.
It means deny self and take up your cross daily and follow Jesus-ref Luke 9:23.
It means to come to Jesus with an attitude of, "I can't do it." You come broken, humbled, in a helpless, hopeless, unworthy state, renouncing everything, and turn to Jesus as your only hope of salvation. You come acknowledging that He is God Almighty and you are not worthy to tie His shoelaces.
It means as Job said in Job 42:6 - I ABHOR (or hate or despise) MYSELF, AND REPENT IN DUST AND ASHES. This is not the kind of repentance that is being taught in most churches today, because most people do not want to come to Jesus by the way of the cross and the way of truth.
Webster’s New World Dictionary tells us the word "repent" means the following: "To feel such regret over (an action, intention), as to change one's mind, etc." This is further confirmed in the Bible as we read in 2 Cor 7:10 " For Godly Sorrow Works Repentance to Salvation." The next part of the verse states, NOT TO BE REPENTED OF. In other words, you turn away from all willful sin, and you do not go back. The next part of the verse gives us a warning: BUT THE SORROW OF THE WORLD WORKETH DEATH. A person’s attitude about sin changes. Before salvation, a person enjoyed sin. They were not concerned about disobeying God. Their own desires were more important to them than obeying God. But now, they begin to hate every sinful or evil way. It is written, YE THAT LOVE THE LORD, HATE EVIL-Ps 97:10. THE FEAR OF THE LORD IS TO HATE EVIL - Prov 8:13.
Thus repentance (to repent), means we feel terrible about our sins. We are sorry about our sins. We deeply regret what we have done and are willing to turn from all sin. We change direction.
We are willing to change our mind about our sins. Our life style changes.
We are willing to forsake all our sins and give them up. To put it straight forward, we are willing to "stop all willful sin." We do a complete turn. This is repentance, which is an absolute condition for salvation. This next verse gives us another definition of repentance.
Some people have stopped doing a particular sin not because of true repentance or Godly sorrow about their sin, but because of certain circumstances. One of many possible examples is a person might stop drinking or smoking for health reasons. Another example, is a person might stop having sex outside of marriage because of fear of getting AIDS. This is not repentance. "Turning over a new leaf," as some people may say, is not true repentance.
Once a person truly repents, their parents, relatives, employers, husband or wife, friends, and others may persecute them. Other things may happen. Incredible temptations may occur. Yet we are to repent no matter what the cost and not go back into willful sin.
Repentance means that we put off the old man, the old ways, the past; and we put on the new man, the new ways, the future.
We also Eph 4:22-24 "PUT OFF CONCERNING THE FORMER CONVERSATION THE OLD MAN (or the old ways), WHICH IS CORRUPT ACCORDING TO THE DECEITFUL LUSTS; AND BE RENEWED IN THE SPIRIT OF YOUR MIND; AND THAT YE PUT ON THE NEW MAN, WHICH AFTER GOD IS CREATED IN RIGHTEOUSNESS AND TRUE HOLINESS."
We can only be renewed in knowledge through God's Word.
This happens because
The Holy Spirit is not to be put into an unrepentant sinner else the bottles break, and the wine (or Holy Spirit) runneth out, and the bottles or person perishes. But rather, the Holy Spirit is put into new bottles (a repentant person that has put away sin, that has put off sin, that has put off the old ways, that has put off the old man) and both are preserved.
Not only do we stop doing those things which are wrong, but we "start" doing those things which are right, and "obey" God's Word. For the person that can read, the number one thing he begins doing is reading and studying the Bible. It is written, AS NEWBORN BABES, DESIRE (or crave or are starving for) THE SINCERE MILK OF THE WORD, THAT YE MAY GROW THEREBY: IF SO BE YE HAVE TASTED THAT THE LORD IS GRACIOUS-1 Pe 2:2,3. It is only through God's Word that we can learn what is right and wrong in God's eyes. It is only by God's Word that we can grow in faith, because faith comes only by the Word of God (the Bible).
A person that can read and claims they are saved, yet only reads one, two, or three chapters a week, would appear to be very misled. It would appear true repentance may not have taken place. It would seem to indicate that they are not serious about God, about their salvation, and about obeying God's Word.
They may have stopped willful sin, but have not begun to FOLLOW JESUS. For Jesus would lead them to begin reading and studying HIS Word heavily. Just as a new plant in a garden needs water, so the new born-again Christian needs God's Word. If you gave a new plant in a garden only a few drops of water a week, it would soon die. If you give a new born-again Christian only one, two or three chapters a week, they will soon die, or perhaps they never were born-again to start with.
We are to hear God's Word, study God's Word, meditate in God's Word, and read God's Word. If a person claims they are born-again, yet God's Word does not take first place in their life, then it is a good indicator that the person is not truly born-again, but only thinks they are. They are deceived.
To follow Jesus is, number one—to learn HIS Word and obey it. It is written,
Many more times these words appear in the Bible, also. The message is loud and clear. A person, even a preacher, even a denominational head, even someone that goes forth to evangelize, BUT does not meditate, study, read, hear, learn, and obey God's Word is not truly following Jesus. As it has already been said, a person that can read, but only reads one, two or three or even four or five chapters a week, is NOT FOLLOWING JESUS. They are not serious about God's Word, which is Jesus. They are certainly not doing God's will. Repentance may never have taken place. A fruit of repentance is doing what God's Word says. A person that does not LABOUR in God's Word or that does not dwell in God's Word cannot grow in faith, in knowledge, in wisdom, and in understanding.
Matt 7:20 Jesus says, "BY THEIR FRUITS YOU SHALL KNOW THEM"
This is only a very small, partial list.
Some believe they can bind the devil from tempting them. Some believe that when a person sins, others should just pray for them or with them. This is not repentance. There is much deception regarding "repentance." This is all part of the Laodicean church age we now live in. Some come to churches and go to the altars time after time, but they refuse to repent.
If a person claims they have repented, but are not "following" Jesus, then it is solid evidence no repentance has taken place, or the person is backsliding. To follow Jesus is to begin to do in our daily life what Jesus would do. It is to begin to do what Jesus would do in each and every daily situation that arises. The fruits of obedience, the fruits of God’s Spirit, the fruits of God’s work should begin to manifest themselves. Many do what appears to be God’s work, but they are not following Jesus in their daily lives. God’s will does not manifest itself in many things the person does. The fruits of God’s Spirit are at best, lukewarm. God’s will is not obeyed when it is contrary to what the person’s emotions want to do. Sometimes God’s will is not sought in certain situations, because the person does not want to conform to the will of God, if it is contrary to his own will.
After true repentance has taken place, which is in line with God's Word, then the person is to be baptized by full immersion in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Any baptism before true repentance means absolutely nothing. We are to "first" believe, and then get baptized-ref Mark 16:16. We are to "first" repent, and then get baptized-ref Acts 2:38.
We ask you, have you truly repented? Have you given up illicit sex, drugs, getting drunk, and putting your will before God’s will? Have you given up cursing, lying, cheating, and defiling your body with anything that might cause it harm? The Bible clearly tells us, if you defile or cause harm to your body, God will destroy you.
Then verse 18 gives us a warning with the first five words, LET NO MAN DECEIVE HIMSELF. Satan will tell you sin is all right. He will try to put in your mind that you do not have to fear God’s judgment. He did it with Eve in the Garden of Eden when he told her, YE SHALL NOT SURELY DIE. But God’s Word said she would die. Eve was deceived, and she ate of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and God’s Word did come to pass. Now we ask you again, have you truly given up all sin? Have you truly repented?
Let us put it plainly. If you have not completely repented at this point, you are not saved. You may believe on Jesus. You may have said a sinner’s prayer, and you may have been baptized, but if you did not forsake all willful sin, if you did not repent as God’s Word commands, you are not saved.
Many people in this deceived and sinful world have sex outside of marriage. They need to come to repentance, or they will surely perish.
Many people are living in fornication. Many do not understand what fornication is. One form of fornication is when a man and a woman move in together. Some may even have the permission of their parents. They may even have paid some money. Sometimes they may live in the house of one of the parents, yet they have never been married in the eyes of a holy God. They have no documentation or marriage license, and they shrug this off as not necessary. They say they are married because their parents, preacher, relatives, and friends approve. They may say, "Many people do this. It is our tradition." They may have children or even grandchildren.
Let's be very blunt. Both they and the many people that do this are living in fornication. This is one definition of what fornication actually is. A person that is doing this is living in wickedness and sin. They have not repented of ungodly evil traditions. They are not saved. They may say they believe on Jesus, but they twist and do not believe "His" Word; though they may say they believe God’s Word. All of their lives they have been taught by their parents, relatives, and clergy that what they are doing is all right in the eyes of God; but it is not. They have been misled. They have been conforming to traditions. Now when they study God's Word, they do not see what they are doing is evil and wrong. They are in blindness and darkness because of ungodly traditions.
They will surely perish when they die, unless they repent of this sinful life style, and stop justifying it. They should hate every evil way, yet they do not hate this sin, because they refuse to admit what they are doing is a wicked sin.
Many preachers and even some denominational heads over many churches do this. They refuse to believe the truth of God's Word on this subject. Some even have two or more wives and justify this sin also. God forbid.
Some lesbians and homosexuals live together and even call themselves married. Many even claim they are Christians. When they die, they will find they are in hell and that they were very misled—unless they totally repent.
Immediately, separate. Get married God's way. If a dowry is required, pay it first in full. A large, expensive wedding is NOT necessary. Get the proper, legal paperwork. Get baptized afterward.
As stated above, a man and woman might be living together. They may have had permission from their parents. They might even have children. They might have even paid some money. However, they are not married in the eyes of a holy God. They are following the tradition of a country, but not God's Word. It is not possible for them to be walking with God, no matter how much they teach God's Word. They are blind, yet they are positive they are not blind, as the Pharisees also were. They are living in fornication. Often-times, when they are confronted with God's Word on this subject, they are so filled with wrong thoughts, teachings, traditions, fears, and pressures from relatives and their community that they will not or cannot understand in their heart. They do not understand that they are living in wickedness and sin, and are not walking with God no matter how much they may look like they are. They will not believe God's Word. They may even become argumentative and strifeful, and say that God's Word does not mean this or that. They may say, "That is your interpretation." They may say, "God knows my heart." They do not understand that "Without holiness, no man will see the Lord"-ref Heb 12:14.They do not understand that"
Because they will not believe God's Word on this subject, neither would they believe a missionary, an angel, or even Jesus Himself, or anyone sent to them from God to correct them. Their own traditions and sins have blinded them to the truth.
Such people need to repent. They need to be broken and humbled. They need to cry out for God's mercy and deny themselves. They should separate, and then get married God's way. Then afterward, they should be baptized by immersion in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. From that point, they should continue walking with God.
Again, it needs to be said. Because they will not receive correction as a little child, with a childlike, humble, meek attitude, it shows clearly, they are not being led of God. Some of these people are so positive they are saved and so blind that even when they are left behind in the Rapture or even when they are at the judgment, they try to argue with Jesus. Nevertheless, because they would not depart from iniquity, they shall surely perish for eternity.
This needs to be understood. Sin is not defined by traditions of a people or a country. It is not defined by a person's emotions. It is not defined by what you think sin is or is not.
Sin is defined by God's Word, and God's Word only. It is God's Word that shall judge you. No matter how positive you, your parents, your friends, your church, and your community may be, or even if your country believes you are right; it is God's Word that will judge you. It is God's Word that will declare if you are in sin or not.
Many think they have come to the light. They teach God's Word. They go on missionary trips. They evangelize, but they will not come in truth and surrender to God's Word.
Regarding "fornication" it is written,
If a person's heart and mind is so corrupt that they cannot understand what fornication is after they have been shown by God's Word, then there is little else that can be said. A minister that does not understand the biblical meaning of fornication is not a preacher of righteousness. He is a blind leader of the blind.
Does your preacher live in fornication or adultery? In 1 Cor 11:1, Paul wrote, BE YE FOLLOWERS OF ME, EVEN AS I ALSO AM OF CHRIST. Note the words EVEN AS I ALSO AM OF CHRIST. If a preacher of the church you attend is not following Christ, you should not follow Him.
Many are going to churches that have blind leaders of the blind. The preacher himself is not married in the eyes of God.
When we repent, we change direction. We now obey God’s Word. We now yield ourselves to God, not to sin and ungodly traditions. We begin to do the will of God which is always in accordance with the Bible.
God warns us particularly about illicit sex in"
Your body no longer belongs to you, if you have given yourself to Jesus through repentance. Your body either belongs to God or Satan. If you choose to serve sin, then you are a servant of sin, and your father is the devil. If you choose by an act of your will to serve God, then you are His possession redeemed by the blood of Jesus.
The Bible is ever so clear that in the latter days, which we are living in right now, the people will not want to hear the truth of God’s Word. They will prefer to turn away from God’s truth and find teachers that preach nice things that do not offend them. People today want to be able to do as they wish, go about business as usual, go to church when they wish, control their own lives; and when the judgment comes, they want to enter heaven. Sorry, it just doesn’t work that way. Right now, people are being tested to see if they will follow God and obey the Gospel, or if they willingly choose to put their will before what God wants them to do.
Friends, we are presenting to you God’s Truth. Will you turn your ears from the truth, as many do in this lukewarm generation?
God is not willing that any should perish. God loves you so very deeply that He sent His only begotten Son to suffer a horrible death to atone for your sins. Do you love Him enough to receive this forgiveness? Do you love Him enough to say, "Thank you?" Do you love Him enough to say, "Yes, God, I love You, and will follow You and Your ways?"
Repent is a command to both those that have never been saved and also those that were once saved and walking with the Lord, but then turned from the faith and went back into sin and unbelief.
These people thought they could not lose salvation. The Lord responds to that notion through Ezekiel, in v.17, with these words: YET…THY PEOPLE SAY, THE WAY OF THE LORD IS NOT EQUAL: BUT AS FOR THEM, THEIR WAY IS NOT EQUAL. These words are for every person who believes once saved, always saved. God's way is this. When you surrender to Jesus, all your sins are erased. They are not remembered. However, if you turn from your faith in Jesus and go back into sin, all your righteousness is equally not remembered. Totally equal are God's ways.
God says to you right now these words:
If you are willing to turn from all your sins and afterward be baptized by full immersion in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost and are willing to give and surrender your life totally to Jesus; then I invite you to say this prayer right now "DEAR JESUS, I AM A SINNER. I BELIEVE YOU ARE THE SON OF GOD AND DIED FOR MY SINS ON THE CROSS. FORGIVE ALL MY SINS. REMOVE ALL MY DOUBTS. JESUS, I ASK YOU TO COME INTO MY HEART. HELP ME TO FOLLOW AND OBEY YOUR COMMANDMENTS AND TO LIVE FOR YOU. JESUS, I GIVE YOU MY LIFE. THANK YOU FOR HEARING MY PRAYER. THANK YOU FOR COMING INTO MY LIFE. I ASK IT IN THE NAME OF MY LORD AND SAVIOUR, JESUS CHRIST. AMEN."
Now Go and Bear Much Fruit for Jesus!
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