The word repent is one that doesn’t sit too well with many people around the world. What is intended to be a gift and opportunity to encounter the grace of God has now become something individuals cringe at. I blame those wielding bullhorns and picket signs for the mess that has become of repentance.
And while this liturgical experience may have a bad reputation due to the idiotic actions of others, we must understand that repentance itself one of the most vital parts of the Christian faith. Without it, a relationship with God isn’t possible.
What is Repentance?
Repentance is all about turning away from our fleshly desires, and instead clinging to the beauty and supremacy of God’s will. There is nothing to be ashamed about in admitting you’ve messed up. Repentance bridges the gap between our failures and God’s forgiveness. That’s the beauty. It’s the gateway to new life and an unrelenting relationship with God.
You and I must stop viewing repentance as a burdensome I have to, and instead realize it’s an undeserved I get to. We must understand how lucky we are to have a loving God who gives us the opportunity to admit our failures and choose to turn away from our selfish ways. Repentance is a gift not a burden. There is an unfathomable liturgical experience when one finds the humility to turn from their ways and seek forgiveness in the grace of God.
The basic definition of repentance is: to turn away from something or change your mind. Nothing more and nothing less. Repentance is all about seeking forgiveness for the mistakes and downfalls we’ve found ourselves in the middle of. When we repent, we are telling God we put his will above our own.
Repentance itself was never meant to be promoted in a way of fear-mongering and hate).
“Repentance grows as faith grows. Do not make any mistake about it; repentance is not a thing of days and weeks, a temporary penance to be got over as fast as possible! No; it is the grace of a lifetime, like faith itself. God’s little children repent, and so do the young men and the fathers. Repentance is the inseparable companion of faith.” —Charles Spurgeon
Let’s take a moment to renew the way we see repentance. And why we can’t shame people into repentance.
Bible Verses About Repentance
From that time Jesus began to preach his message: “Turn away from your sins, because the Kingdom of heaven is near!”
You will never succeed in life if you try to hide your sins. Confess them and give them up; then God will show mercy to you.
Repent, then, of this evil plan of yours, and pray to the Lord that He will forgive you for thinking such a thing as this.
In the same way, I tell you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.
Do those things that will show that you have turned from your sins.
Repent, then, and turn to God, so that He will forgive your sins.
So watch what you do! “If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him.”
Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.
Yet now I am happy, not because you were made sorry, but because your sorrow led you to repentance. For you became sorrowful as God intended and so were not harmed in any way by us.
But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when His righteous judgment will be revealed.
When they heard this, they had no further objections and praised God, saying, “So then, even to Gentiles God has granted repentance that leads to life.”
The Lord is not slow concerning his promise, as some regard slowness, but is being patient toward you, because He does not wish for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.