Arkiv | 2012/04/19

Repentance is a condition for salvation

EXCEPT YE REPENT ye shall all likewise PERISH (Luke 13:3)

”Repent” is a translation from the Greek word metanoeó (Strong’s 3340) and means to repent, to change one’s mind or to change the inner man. From metá and noiéo.

Repenting doesn’t mean just saying ”I’m sorry” or ”I’m sorry that I got caught”, or something that we do on a daily basis. Repenting means to raise a white flag and making a decision to make the utmost to not repeat the sins again. It doesn’t mean we need to sign a legal document where we take an oath to never sin ever again as long as we live, but the aim should be to avoid sinning. If we sin, repent, sin, repent, sin, repent, it shows that we have not truly repented in the first place.

Repentance is a CONDITION for being cleansed from our sins and thus saved, so it’s important that the churches preach repentance and not only ”God loves you as you are”, or else they have missed to inform the hearers about something that is essential for our salvation . We really deserve to be punished for transgressing the law, but God is willing to pardon us, albeit not unconditionally. In order to be cleansed from our sins we must first confess our sins and repent. Not until then can we be cleansed in the blood of Jesus, and that is through the grace of God and through his mercy towards us. God would never lie and suggest that we are cleansed and forgiven if we still live in sin. Sins make us filthy and always separate us from God who is holy. Repentance always comes before cleansing and forgiveness, and not the other way around. John says that IF we sin (not WHEN we sin) we have an advocate with the Father:

John 2:1My little children, these things write I unto you, THAT YE SIN NOT. And IF any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous 

Both John the Baptist and Jesus Christ started out preaching about REPENTANCE

Matthew 31In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,:2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.— 6And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins. 7But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 8Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance

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

Repentance means that our PAST sins are forgiven, and obviously not our present and/or future sins

2 Pet 1:9 But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been CLEANSED FROM HIS PAST SINS. 

Romans 3:24, 25 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness FOR THE REMISSION OF SINS THAT ARE PAST, through the forbearance of God.

2 Cor 7:9 Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that your sorrow led to repentance. For you were made sorry in a godly manner, that you might suffer loss from us in nothing. 10 For godly sorrow produces repentance LEADING TO salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death. 11 For observe this very thing, that you sorrowed in a godly manner: What diligence it produced in you, what clearing of yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what vehement desire, what zeal, what vindication! In all things you proved yourselves to be clear in this matter.

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

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.

Proverbs 28:13 He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy

Mat 6:14,15 For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. 

2 Chron. 15:2 The LORD is with you when you are with him. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will forsake you.

Luke 9:23-26 If anyone is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels

Mat 10:33 But whoever disowns me before men, I will disown him before my Father in heaven.–Mat 26:69-75Then Peter remembered the word Jesus had spoken: “Before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.”

Mat 18:32-35 Then the master called the servant in. You wicked servant, he said, I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you? In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed. —This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart. 

Other verses about repentance

Matthew 11:20 Then began he to upbraid the cities wherein most of his mighty works were done because they repented not. 21 Woe unto thee Chorazin woe unto thee Bethsaida for if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes (+ Luke 10:13)

Matthew 12:41 The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgement with this generation and shall condemn it because they repented at the preaching of Jonas and behold a greater than Jonas is here (+ Luke 11:32)

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

Mark 6:12 And they went out and preached that men should repent

Luke 13:3 + 5 I tell you Nay but EXCEPT YE REPENT ye shall all likewise PERISH

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”—10 Likewise I say unto you there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth

Luke 16:30 And he said Nay father Abraham but if one went unto them from the dead they will repent

Luke 17:3 Take heed to yourselves If thy brother trespass against thee rebuke him and if he repent forgive him 4 And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day and seven times in a day turn again to thee saying I repent thou shalt forgive him

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 8:22 Repent therefore of this thy wickedness and pray God if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee

Acts 17:30 And the times of this ignorance God winked at but now COMMANDETH ALL MEN EVERY WHERE to repent

Acts 26:20 But shewed first unto them of Damascus and at Jerusalem and throughout all the coasts of Judaea and then to the Gentiles that they should REPENT AND TURN TO GOD AND DO WORKS meet for repentance

2 Cor. 12:21 And lest when I come again my God will humble me among you and that I shall bewail many which have sinned already and have not repented of the uncleanness and fornication and lasciviousness which they have committed

Rev. 2:5 Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen and repent and do the first WORKS or else I will come unto thee quickly and will REMOVE thy candlestick out of his place except thou repent

Rev. 2:21 And I gave her space to repent of her fornication and she repented not. 22 Behold I will cast her into a bed and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation except they repent of their DEEDS

Rev. 3:3 Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard and hold fast and REPENT. If therefore thou shalt not watch I will come on thee as a thief and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee

Rev 3:19 As many as __ I love I rebuke and chasten be zealous therefore and repent

Rev. 9:20 And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet REPENTED NOT of the works of their hands that they should not worship devils and idols of gold and silverand brass and stone and of wood which neither can see nor hear nor walk. 21 Neither REPENTED THEY of their murders nor of their sorceries nor of their fornication nor of their thefts

Rev. 16:9 And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give him glory. 10And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain, 11And blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their DEEDS.

Rev. 2:16 REPENT or else I will come unto thee quickly and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth

Acts 11:18 When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.

Here are verses from one of the early church fathers:

1 Clement 7:4 Let us fix our eyes on the blood of Christ and understand how precious it is unto His Father, because being shed for our salvation it won for the whole world the grace of repentance.

1 Clement 7:5 Let us review all the generations in turn, and learn how from generation to generation the Master hath given a place for repentance unto them that desire to turn to Him.

Chapter 28 ”For He fore-knows that some are to be saved by repentance, some even that are perhaps not yet born. In the beginning He made the human race with the power of thought and of choosing the truth and doing right, so that all men are without excuse before God; for they have been born rational and contemplative.” Justin Martyr

If God no longer draws/calls people due to their choice to harden their hearts and turn their backs on him, then they will not be granted repentance.

Repentance is granted and commanded by God to ALL men everywhere. Telling God that we feel bad about what we have done is not good enough if we make no plans to stop. Also many atheists might feel extremely bad about  sins they have committed. Repentance is to cast out all filth IN ORDER to make our temples clean for the reception of the Holy Spirit (Matt. 12:43-45; Lk. 11:24-26; Acts 5:32). Repentance is a change of mind, inclinations and desires, which translates into a total change in conduct. It’s initiated by God through a crisis of conviction leading to a godly sorrow for sin and it means to  forsake our wickedness, purge our hearts of evil and to seek the mercy of God.  The passions and desires of the flesh are crucified (Ro. 6:6; Gal. 5:24) and this happens in repentance and not successively afterwards.  Old things pass away and all things become new. If a husband is cheating on his wife, the wife would expect the husband to stop sleeping with another woman. What would she think if he said, ”I really love you, honey, and I am *willing* to stop sleeping with the other woman, but it may take some time.” We would not accept such excuse from our partner. Why do people expect that of God?

Annonser

James 2 says that we are justified by WORKS and not by faith alone

Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only (James 2:24)

In order to avoid the implications of what this verse is saying – that we are not justified by faith alone – people suggest that we are justified by our works before PEOPLE, whereas we are justified by our faith (alone) before GOD. But does understanding hold up to scrutiny? Let’s see what James 2 is saying about Abraham:

James 2:21Was not Abraham our father justified by WORKS, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar22Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? 23And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. 24Ye see then how that BY WORKS a man is justified, and NOT by faith only25Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way? 26For as the body without the spirit is dead, so FAITH WITHOUT WORKS IS DEAD ALSO.

Here is the incident where Abraham offered up his son Isaac:

Genesis 22:And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him.Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off.And Abraham said unto his young men, ABIDE YE HERE WITH THE ASS; and I AND THE LAD WILL GO YONDER and worship, and come again to you.And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood.—11 And the angel of the Lord called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and he said, Here am I.12 “Do not lay a hand on the boy“, he said. “Do not do anything to him. NOW I KNOW that you fear God, because you have not withheld from me your son, your only son.”—18 And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; BECAUSE thou hast obeyed my voice.19 So Abraham returned unto his young men, and they rose up and went together to Beersheba; and Abraham dwelt at Beersheba.

If James 2:21-24 is supposed to show that christians are justified by works before people, then James couldn’t have chosen a worse example since there were NO people around to see Abraham nearly sacrificing his son which James described as ”Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?” Abraham was alone when he offered up his son, and not even his servants were around to see it (which is also confirmed by the secular history as per The Book of Jasher). We can read that God says ”Now I know” when he beheld Abraham offering his son. Clearly Abraham’s famous work which labelled him ”righteous” (the most famous example) was before GOD and not before people. We can get this established also here:

Romans 2:13 For not the hearers of the law are just BEFORE GOD, but the doers of the law shall be justified  

The passage earlier in James 2 says this:

James 2:14What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? 15If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, 16And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? 17Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. 18Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. 19Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble20But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? 

The context is about WORKS (and not about the constitution of God or angels). James compares faith without works with the faith that demons have, and even though he confirms that demons also have faith they don’t have the right fruit to go with it. Faith without works is dead, and works without faith is dead as well. We can’t merit salvation with our works, but works is still a condition for salvation and therefore needed. If we don’t show good fruit, Jesus promises we will be cut off the vine so it’s something very essential for our salvation. We know that sinning doesn’t mean reduced rewards in heaven, but our SOULS are at stake:

Rom 6:21 What benefit did you reap at that time from the things you are now ashamed of? Those things result in DEATH!

Romans 6:16: Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin UNTO DEATH, or obedience unto righteousness.

1 Pet 2:11 Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your SOUL.

Romans 8: 6For to be carnally minded is DEATH; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 7Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. 8So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. —13For if ye live after the flesh, YE SHALL DIE: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, YE SHALL LIVE. 

John 3:36 He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son WILL NOT SEE LIFE, but the wrath of God abides on him.

Mark 9:47.And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into HELL

Matt. 7:21 Not everyone who says to me Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who DOES the will of my Father who is in heaven.

1 Peter 4:18 And if it is with difficulty that the righteous is saved, what will become of the godless man and sinner?

1 Cor. 9.“Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived…”

Matt. 16:24 Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up theircross and follow me.

Ephesians 2:8-9 doesn’t promise us that we can serve two masters and still be saved

The oft mentioned verses in Eph. 2:8-9 doesn’t speak against the above. We are either saved by the law OR by grace through faith (one or the other), and we know it could not be the former since that option requires 100% obedience at all times which we have not achieved. Thankfully God offers the gift of salvation by faith, but this doesn’t mean that obeying the MORAL law (the ten commandments) is from now on just ”optional” to obey, albeit ”good” if we manage to obey them. No, we are supposed to have these laws in our hearts and we are not under the law IF we live by the spirit. The ten commandments are just as important to obey today as they have always been (ever since the time of Adam) since iniquities continue to separate us from God. We are free from ceremonial laws but certainly not from the ten commandments. Being cleansed in the blood of Jesus doesn’t mean that we are still saved if we continue to get filthy in the future. See also how Paul on one hand says we are NOT under the law, but on the other hand lists numerous examples of sins which separate us from God.

Gal.5:18 BUT IF YE BE LED OF THE SPIRIT, YE ARE NOT UNDER THE LAW. 19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21Envyings murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. 

1 Corinthians 7:19 Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God.

Rom.3:30Seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith.31Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, We ESTABLISH THE LAW.

Justified by the works of the law?

God cannot lie so he cannot justify the wicked (Ex. 23:7; Deut. 25:1; Prov. 17:15; Nah. 1:3). While the law condemns the guilty, God has the authority to forgive and pardon the sinner. Justification by grace is when those who are guilty and deserve punishment are pardoned and forgiven. Justification by works of the law is merited and deserved, while justification by grace is unmerited and undeserved. Jesus used the word justification synonymous with forgiveness (Lk. 18:10-14). God will not set aside the penalty of a sinner who still plans on sinning. God says that it is an ”abomination” to ”justifieth the wicked”. (Prov. 17:15). God said ”I will not justify the wicked” (Ex. 23:7). God is ”angry with the wicked every day” (Ps. 7:11).  We  must give up our wickedness if we want to escape the anger of God and the punishment of hell.  ”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” (Isa. 55:6-7). Those who are described as being ”justified” in the Scriptures are also described as being ”sanctified” and ”washed” (1 Cor. 6:11). Those who will inherit the kingdom of God are ”them which are sanctified”. (Acts 20:32)  When a sinner repents he actually becomes a holy saint. Without this repentance or moral transformation, there is no forgiveness or eternal life.

Jesus righteousness is not imputed into us

Are we cleansed in the blood of Christ upon repentance (resulting in our purification), or do we cover up our filth with an injection of the righteous blood of Jesus? If we need to get Jesus righteous blood into our veins, then we are saved by WORKS – namely the works that Jesus did for us when he obeyed the law perfectly. Those who repent and believe are justified by God’s grace through the atonement. Our new clean status will last as long as we keep ourselves clean, because God will not pretend that we are righteous when we in reality mix holy living with unholy living.

We do not earn our salvation by anything we do or believe since we have sinned.Justification by works of the law is when you are pronounced innocent because your record is perfect in the sight of the law. Justification by grace is when you are pronounced forgiven even though you have been guilty of sin in your life. Christ died for us but He did not obey for us.  We are imputed righteous through Christ, but we do not receive the imputed righteousness of Christ. Biblical imputed righteousness is when you are forgiven and treated as if you had always been righteous even though you haven’t been.

Paul quoted Psalms 31:1-2 when he said.

”Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, saying, blessed are they whoses iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin” (Rom. 4:5-8).

To be imputed righteous is when your sins are forgiven and covered, and after that moment we need to continue living in obedient faith. There is no way that God would declare us righteous and forgiven while we continue to practice unrighteousness. Abraham OBEYED God and THEREFORE his faith was credited (imputed) to him as RIGHTEOUSNESS. God did not have to pretend that he was righteous because his heart was upright and obedient in faith. It was his FAITH that was imputed as righteousness (Rom. 4:5), and it doesn’t state that it was Christ’s righteousness that was being imputed.