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Why is Repentance Necessary?

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Why is Repentance Necessary?

Repentance is a powerful thing. Repentance eliminates any false sense of security about our relationship with God. When we willfully practice repentance, we are assuming that our relationship with God is not necessarily okay. We are willfully laying everything before the Lord and asking Him to reveal the truth about us.

Why is repentance necessary?

We settle into comfortable patterns with God. We naturally assume everything is as it needs to be, but we haven’t examined our hearts lately – and that makes repentance necessary.

Every husband knows that feeling of panic when his wife ask, “So, how do you think we are doing? Are you happy with our relationship?”

When it comes to God we must ask, “What in my life needs to be strengthened? What needs to be eliminated?” Repentance is that process.

In the Greek “repent” [metanoeô] means:

  • to have a change of heart.
  • to turn from our sin.
  • to change our direction.

In an effort to be comfortable with God we compare ourselves to others, to someone worse off in our eyes so we can feel pretty good about ourselves.

This is a trap we fall into when we are not frequent “repenters.”

In Luke 13, Jesus tells people to turn to God and change the way they think and act. “At that time some people reported to Jesus about some Galileans whom Pilate had executed while they were sacrificing animals.”[1] Jesus must have picked up on something in the tone in which they were speaking when they told him this story.

Jesus replied to them, “Do you think that this happened to them because they were more sinful than other people from Galilee?”[2] Jesus was saying, “Don’t think God judges you on a bell curve against the wrong doing of others. That’s not how it works!”

It’s amazing how judgmental and sanctimonious we can become when we talk about the sins of others.

  • We hear this kind talk all the time in political circles: “We’re the party of God; therefore, they must be the party of the devil.”
  • Do you suppose they were worse sinners because they suffered these things?

Jesus said that’s not how it works. You are all sinners in need of God’s forgiveness which is accessed by consistent repentance.

The ONLY thing that keeps all of us from perishing is the grace and mercy of God. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”[3]

Listen to the complete message, “Cutting Out the Dead Wood” here.

[1] Luke 13:1 GW

[2] Luke 13:2 GW

[3] GW


About Ron Bontrager

Lead Pastor of Lakeview Church in Indianapolis.

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