Scripture reading – Revelation 2:1-7; Psalms 32 & 51
The life of a true believer is one of continual repentance.
Apostle John says in 1 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.” This was the Lord’s requirements He had for the seven churches in Asia Minor. On several occasions He called on them to repent (Rev 2:5, 16; 3:3, 19).
What Not Repentance Is?
Repentance is not feeling sorry for our sin.
- Apostle Paul says in 2 Cor 7:10, “For godly sorrow produces repentance to salvation, not to be regretted, but the sorrow of the world produces death.”
- A criminal may feel sorry that he is caught, but that is not sorrow after a godly manner.
Repentance is not a license to sin
- It is important to note that when sin increased, God’s grace also increased (Rom 5:20).
Paul then immediately asks a related question, “What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound?” (Rom 6:1).
The answer for this is: “Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?” (Rom 6:2).
- Repentance is not to avoid consequences of sin.
• When Christian commits sin, although he receives forgiveness as he rightfully confesses his sin, disciplinary chastisement will be there. It will not be retributive, means God punishing His child with wrath, but it will be corrective in nature.
• Hebrews 12:5-6, “My son, do not despise the chastening of the LORD, nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; For whom the LORD loves, He chastens, and scourges every son whom He receives.”
Repentance is not making request to God through any human saints or mediators.
- Apostle Paul tells us to Timothy in 1 Timothy 2:5, “For there is one God, and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus.”
- Hebrews 4:14-16, “Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. . . Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, . . .”
What Repentance Is?
Repentance, in a nutshell, involves three things
- Recognition of our sin,
- Renunciation of our sin, and
- Returning to God.
In Acts 3:19 the Apostle Peter calls on the Jews to repent saying, “Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord.”
- True Christian repentance involves a heartfelt conviction of sin, a penitence or remorse or sorrow over the offense to God, a turning away from the sinful way of life, and a turning towards a God- honoring way of life.
- It involves forsaking that which is displeasing to God and turning to Him for pardon and sanctification (the setting apart for holiness) (2 Tim 2:21).
What the Benefits of Repentance Are?
1. Repentance allows God forgive, restore, and purify us:
- The Apostle John says in 1 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.”
- When we return to Him, He will return to us (Zechariah 1:3; Malachi 3:7).
2. Repentance drives the devil away from us:
- The Apostle James says in James 4:7, “Submit yourselves to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
- Remember, when Christians sin, the devil is taking advantage of us. The Apostle John says in 1 John 3:8, “He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning.”
3. Repentance frees us from the torment of sin:
- Sin brings guilt, fear, doubt, and fear of condemnation unto us.
- The author of Hebrews says in 4:16, “Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and grace to help in time of need.”
4. Repentance leads us to fullness of life with Christ:
- Jesus says in Revelation 3:19, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.”
- The immeasurable joy of having intimate fellowship with God is what Jesus won for us through His death and resurrection, so that we “may have life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10).
How Do We Repent?
King David is an excellent example for repentance:
- David enters into the gravity of his sin.
- He mourn for his rebellion against the true and living God. He do not seek to minimize our sin, nor to rationalize it.
- He rather cry out for forgiveness in Christ.
- He asks that his Father in heaven might in His grace cover his sin with His blood. He rejoices that Christ not only can cover his sin, but has done so.
- David realizes that one’s sincere pursuit and faithful embrace of repentance leads to the greatest
blessing of all: forgiveness (v 1).
- Forgiveness lifts the burden from his shoulders. “Blessed is he whose sin is covered” (v 1).
- David’s unconfessed sin is like an oppressive weight from which he longs to be relieved (vv 3-4). He kept quiet about his sin, suppressed it; he ignored the tug on his heart; and he denied the pain in his conscience. It resulted in divine discipline.
- When he acknowledges his sin before God and confesses it, the Lord forgives his sin (v 5) and his sin is covered (v 1) and his sin will not be placed into his account (v 2).
Christians must be conscious of their sins precisely so that the forgiving, renewing, refreshing reality of God’s grace can control, energize and empower their daily living.