Summary: 1. What is repentance? 2. What are the three types of repentence? 3. After repentance, does a person have to provide restitution (Do I have to make amends a fix what what my sin did)? (The reason there are only three questions, is because question 1 wi
INTRO: OK, I know that I’m an 80’s geek. Okay, I admit it. But there is a highly recognizable song from the 80’s that everyone has heard before (and if someone has not, than I am becoming a much older youth pastor than I actually thought I was). Anyhoo, in this song has lyrics like this:
Turnaround, every now and then I get a little bit lonely and you're never coming around Turnaround, Every now and then I get a little bit tired of listening to the sound of my tears Turnaround, Every now and then I get a little bit nervous that the best of all the years have gone by Turnaround, Every now and then I get a little bit terrified and then I see the look in your eyes Turnaround bright eyes, Every now and then I fall apart Turnaround bright eyes, Every now and then I fall apart
Silly song, but the truth is, when someone comes to Jesus, they have a total eclipse of the heart. And it’s true, so let’s take a look today at what happens when someone turns their life around.
37 When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” 38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.” 40 With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” 41 Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.
1. What is repentance?
2. What are the three types of repentence?
3. After repentance, does a person have to provide restitution (Do I have to make amends a fix what what my sin did)?
(The reason there are only three questions, is because question 1 will take up almost all the time, but also because question 2 is technically three questions in one).
1. What is repentance? MOST OF THE LESSON COULD BE SPENT ON THIS SINGLE QUESTION
In a general definition, repentance is “turning and going the other way.” This definition, which is specifically translated by pastors directly from the Greek over the years, implies a handful of things. It implies that a person will A) recognize they are doing something wrong, B) admit that what they are doing is wrong C) turn from it which means they stop doing it & D) they do something else instead of it!
Honestly, most people think repentance is saying their sorry for doing something. Other people think repentance is saying their sorry AND actually being sorry. But let me put it another way. If I was on trial for murder, a murder that I absolutely did…if a stand before a good judge and sob and sob and sob…will he let me go free? If he is a good judge the answer is no, he will give me my just punishment. Moreover, if while standing there sobbing before the judge I actually meant in my heart to do it again…well…if the judge could read my heart, would I ever be released from prison again? No way.
The point is that most people never really repent of anything. Most people, even people who call themselves Christians, don’t ever actually repent (which does leave their salvation in question). Following is another way to answer this question from gotquestions.org.
"What is repentance and is it necessary for salvation?"
Answer: Many understand the term repentance to mean “turning from sin.” This is not the biblical definition of repentance. 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; 3:19; 11:18; 17:30; 20:21; 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 chapter 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 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.