Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Repentance as an Outcome of Belief


Repentance as an Outcome of Belief

Scripture after scripture displays the affect of belief as leading to repentance. I have a hard time with repentance in my own life. If we truly hold to the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord of our lives we will live a life of constant and consistent repentance. It seems to me that if one is resistant to repentance that they have truly not believed the Lord of the Scriptures. He says, “If anyone would come after me he must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.” That seems like a pretty selfless lifestyle of constant realignment of oneself away from selflessness and toward Christ likeness. How can one move away from self and more towards Christ without constant repentance? I don’t believe it is possible. Jesus also said, “Why do you call me Lord, Lord and do not do what I say?” It is not possible to have Jesus as Lord of your life and to resist doing what he says (i.e. repenting from dead works, “faith without works is dead” James 2:26; Read the whole passage in James 2:14-26).
So then I have to in my own life constantly check the fruit in my life to see that it is keeping with deeds of repentance. Salvation has happened in my life once for all when I believed in Christ, realized my sinfulness, and repented. This is not the end of the story though I must move on to the second step of sanctification (fancy word for becoming like Jesus). That scripture there tells me that I cannot claim him as Lord and do not do what He says. I have to constantly be moving against stagnation in my faith and belief. If that goes unchecked it could lead to an unrepentant heart! And that would be the worst of all outcomes. Romans 2:4 shook me today, “Don’t you realize how kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Or don’t you care? Can’t you see how kind he has been in giving you time to turn from your sins?” Will it be today that I finally turn all the way? No, I will not see the perfection of my body until that day when I receive my new tent, and God completely redeems my body! I will wait with joyful repentant expectation until that day!
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