1-05. What God's Love
Should Lead You to Do
"Do you think lightly of the riches of Yahweh's kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance?" (Romans 2:4)
Repentance is a change of mind, heart and direction. It is shown in a
"sorrow according to the will of God", which leads you to
"turn to God from idols to serve a living and true God". You make an about face from sin
"without regret leading to salvation".
There are some very important principles involved here. To "turn...from idols" doesn't just mean stopping worshipping statues or man-made objects (as this isn't very common these days). An "idol" is anything which commands our devotion, attention, or worship above that rightly owed to Yahweh alone, even if it is something which in itself is not necessarily "evil". Thus if I place
anything before God, I am committing idolatry. Idolatry does not bring life because the only source of life is Yahweh.
The second principle is that if we do not experience regret upon turning away from sin the chances are we have not been properly saved and not admitted Yahshua (Jesus) into our heart. To be valid, repentance must be sincere and complete. It is no use half regretting a life of sin. Repentance must be full.
Yahshua (Jesus) warns:
"Unles you repent, you will all likewise perish". Repentance is not an option - it is an absolute necessity. Faith without a change in mind, heart and direction is not faith in the true sense. Faith is more than passive belief. Faith means belief that leads to a radical change.
"Yahweh is now declaring to to men [and women] that all everywhere should repent". Repentance is not a single event but a life-long process. Just as a spacecraft must make adjustments to its flight path when it deviates from its assigned orbit, so we too must constantly be repenting - changing direction - when we deviate from the path God has commanded us to walk.
Obey Yahweh's command now:
"Repent therefore and return, that your sins may be wiped away". Faith without repentance is the same as good intentions without positive action - it gets us nowhere. Thus
"the Lord...is not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance". Repentance is positive action that leads to salvation. It is not something to be feared. It results in a total renewal and cleansing of our soul which is something to be greatly desired.
Are you sorry for your sins and willing to repent? If so, say:
"I am sorry for my sins. I see that the kindness or love of God leads me to repent."