A life of repentance

“O God of grace, I have no robe to bring to cover my sins, no tool to weave my own righteousness; I am always standing clothed in filthy garments, and by grace I am always receiving change of clothing, for You always justify the ungodly; I am always going into the far country, and always returning home as a prodigal, always saying, Father, forgive me, and You are always bringing out the best robe.” (Puritan prayer)

God grants repentance

“Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses (return to a sound mind, free from illusions and intoxicated thinking, become sober) and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will” (the foolish notion that you can do life well without God) (II Timothy 2:24-26).

“Martin Luther opened the Reformation by nailing the ‘Ninety-five Theses’ to the door of Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany. The very first of the theses stated that, ‘our Lord and Master Jesus Christ willed the entire life of believers to be one of repentance.’”

“On the surface this looks a little bleak. Luther seems to be saying Christians will never make much progress in life. That, of course, wasn’t Luther’s point at all. He was saying that repentance is the way we make progress in the Christian life” (T. Keller).

In repentance, my heart attaches daily to my Advocate with the Father, “Jesus Christ the righteous one” (I John 2:1-2). With deep gratitude, I recount my need for a “merciful and faithful high priest” (Hebrews 2:17) who is able to sympathize with my weaknesses” (Hebrews 4:15), and “save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them” (Hebrews 7:25). He is the one who was made sin for me and I have been made righteous in him (II Corinthians 5:21). “O God of Grace,” I confess, “
You have imputed my sin to my substitute,
and imputed His righteousness
to my soul.” 

Sometimes I even need to repent of my repentance, as the Puritans acknowledged. Why? Because even in my repentance my heart wants to take pride in how repentant I am.

A life of repentance is built on deep personal trust in…

  1. The word of God
  2. The sovereignty of God’s will
  3. The sufficiency of God’s grace
  4. The certainty of God’s promises

Steve Cornell

About Wisdomforlife

Just another worker in God's field.
This entry was posted in Christian life, Christian worldview, Christianity, Life, Repentance and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to A life of repentance

  1. I praise God that he granted me the gift of repentance at the age of 18. I had no sins to repent of at the time except the major one. I had left Him out of my life. Now I see many of my faults, and am grateful for His sufficient grace and mercy to forgive me. Basillea Clink or Brink wrote a book, long out of print, called the Gift of Repentance. it made a great impression.

    Blessed are they that mourn, feeling crushed alone and forlorn
    When your hearts broke in two, God will comfort you.
    Blessed are you when you mourn.

    Blessed are you when you weep, there is coming a time to reap.
    Though you sowed tears in pain, You’ll come rejoicing again.
    Blessed are you when you mourn.

    It’s part of a song God gave me many years ago. Black, the color of mourning, was the color clerics wore because, it is said, to remind them to mourn their sins.



    Is repentance essential to receive forgiveness of sin? Most advocates of salvation by “faith alone” would not include repentance in God’s plan of salvation. How is it possible to be saved without repentance?

    2 Corinthians 7:10 For the sorrow that is according to the will of God produces a repentance without regret, leading to salvation, but the sorrow of the world produces death.

    Looks like a connection of repentance and salvation to me.

    Luke 15:7 I tell you that in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.

    If repentance has no bearing on salvation why is there joy in heaven when one sinner repents?

    Jesus said in: Luke 24:47 and that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.

    Repentance for (in order to) forgiveness of sins was preached on the Day of Pentecost (the Day of Pentecost A.D. 33 was the birth of the church of Christ).

    Acts 2:38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

    The repentance spoken of in (Acts 2:38) is an intellectual commitment to turn from sin and turn toward God. REPENTANCE WAS FOR THE REMISSION OF SIN!

    The three thousand people who were saved on the Day of Pentecost were saved the minute they believed that Jesus was God’s Son, the Christ, that Jesus was resurrected from the grave, repented, confessed Jesus as Lord and Savior and were immersed in water. (It all happened on that day)


    The apostle Paul did not continue to persecute Christians after he was saved.


    1 Corinthians 6:9-11 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters. nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, 10 nor thieves , nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 Such were some of you, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.

    NOTICE; The apostle Paul says such were some of you. PAST TENSE! Paul warns them to keep it in the past tense if they want to inherit the kingdom of God.


    1 Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.

    When Christians sin it because they have made a conscience choice to sin.


    Romans 6:1-2 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? 2 May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?


    Romans 6:3-4 Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? 4 There we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.

    If you are Christian and you are still getting drunk, still fornicating, still a thief and remain a liar, still greedy, still using God’s name in vain; is that an example of walking in newness of life?



    1. I was saved by “faith only” I did not have to repent.
    2. John Calvin said I was “once saved always saved.”
    3. I thought I was saved by “grace alone.” I did not realize that God would not force me to repent.
    4. My church leaders told me if repentance was inconvenient for me I could repent at a later time.



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