The the three words of this title come from Luke13.5,which reads Except ye Repent,ye shall all likewise perish. " plainly,then,the tragic alternative to repentance is eternal perdition. In view of this fact,it is extreamly important that everone know what epentance is and how it is accomplished.
Repentance is more than reformation.
To reform is to improve one's chacter or conduct; to become better; to behave better; to give up misconduct;to make better by removing faults or defects." one who genuninly reforms wills will,from that momet on,live a better life. And certanily this is to be desired. However,reformation falls short in at least one vital particular----- it does nothing about the past. It leaves upon the pages of God's record of all sins that a person has commited. Consequntly,it leaves the sinner still under the sentence of eternal death. Suppose that a criminal who has been guilty of many and various offenses against the law decides to reform. From that momet on,he determins to be a law-abiding citzen. This world would be commendable, but it would not absolve him from his past crimes, unless he is given a pardon.The same is true of the sinner in relation to his past sins.
What is repentance?
Repentance is, fisrst of all, a turning away from all sin. And, so far as this first aspect is concerned,it closely resembles reformation. But repentance further involves turning to God,in believing prayer, for forgiveness and cleansing from all sins.Such a prayer is not necesarilyy vocal,but it usually is. The repentant person confesses to God that he is a sinner and asks forgiveness. If he obeys the gospel,he rest assured that God will forgive,for His word promises," If we confess our sins he is faitful and just to forgive our sins" ( 1John1:9).
The Basics of Repentance.
How is genuine repentance brought about? Paul explained, " For Godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation" ( 2 Corthians7:10) Before a person can repent, he must feel sorrow. For someone to be sorry merly because of his sins has been found out,or because they have brought trouble him,is not enough. He must be sorry because he has broken the commandments of God,spurned His Gospel,and thereby grieved Him days without number. such Godly sorrow is the only motivating for for real repentance.
Repentance and the Holy Ghost Baptism.
A person cannot receive the Holy Ghost before repentance,Jesus said that the "World" could not receive this experiance (John14:17). He meant that those unwilling to give up the carnal things of this world,through repentance,could not receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. Peter made the plain in Acts2:38---- " 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." It was not accident he mentionted repentance first. In God's divine order,repentance must precede water baptsim and receiving the Holy Ghost. The requirements for receiving the Holy Spirit are repentance and faith. In many cases, those who tarry for this spiritual experiance without receiving it simply have not repented. If and when this is true,it is useless for such a one to praise God with the expectation of receiving the Holy Ghost.He should first repent and claim God's promise of forgiveness. As his burdens lift love and mercy, he will naturally begine to worship God. And God will pour out His Spirit this repentant,believing,worshiping soul!
Time for Repentance is Limited.
The time to repent is strickly limited by the extent of earthly life.There can be no repentance after death.Since it is the normal course of events no one knows how long he will live,it is perlious indeed to procrastinate. The bible declares, " it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgement" ( Hebrews 9:27). The time of repentance is further limited by the duration of a person's capablitly of being impressed by conviction. A continuted refusual to repent when called by God's Spirit brings hardness of heart. Pual spoke of people who were past feeling (Ephesians4:19). Such people no longer feel God's Spirit leading them to serve Him. They have lost all desire for repentance. The apostle also asked the question: " Deepest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing the goodnes of God that leadeth to rentance?"( Romans2:4). Think of the goodness of God to you,and surely you heart will be inclined toward repentance. The Lord is "not willing that any would persih but that all should should come to repentance" (2Peter3:9) James4:14 why,do you even know what will happen tomorrow. what is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Don't say oh I'll wait untill tomorrow or next Sunday to repentant at chuch. no you're deciving yourself, no one is guarenteed tommorrow., the bible says today is the day of Salvation.