It's not a popular topic in churches. Preachers and pastors want to make sure people feel good about themselves, and they make the gospel appealing so people won't be offended and leave.
And yet, the Bible teaches that the very first and most fundamental step to peace with God is repentance.
Jesus said, “The Kingdom of God is near! Repent of your sins and believe the Good News!” (Mark 1:15 NLT) And later the apostle Peter said, “Now repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away.” (Act 3:19 NLT) Without repentance, we cannot be saved. (Luke 13:3)
Repentance means turning around and going the other way—turning away from sin and turning to God in faith. Admitting that we've been wrong. Humbling ourselves to admit that we can't change the sin in our hearts and lives, that we can't take away the prevailing sense of guilt that we live with. It’s crying out for help to the One who not only made us, but who loves us and has already provided an answer to our pain and mess.
Why are we so afraid to repent? What are we hanging on to with such a death-grip that keeps us from admitting that we at heart are rebels in need of a savior? Our pride is a closed door to God. And yet, a contrite heart opens that door to all the goodness and love He longs to give us—peace with God and the glorious freedom of a clean heart.
Repentance is the first step to salvation through Jesus Christ. But it is also an ongoing daily life-attitude of keeping a ‘short list’ with the Lord. He always stands ready to forgive and renew our hearts with unfailing mercy and love, and help us get back on track.
Oh, how blessed we are! May He help us today to humble ourselves before Him and receive His forgiveness.
Bible study: Psalm 51, Luke 15:10, Romans 2:4, 1 John 1:9