Monday, October 02, 2006


I am thinking over this definition of repentance by an internet friend...

'repentance is a willingness or resolution to consciously turn away from sin, self, and the Devil, and a concomitant commitment to follow Christ in His lordship.'

Should I agree with this?


Marco Vervoorst said...

Does one need to confess one's sin to be repentant? If so, to whom??

Traditional Anglopapist

L P Cruz said...


Off hand I am not really comfortable with this definition of repentance because I think there is an element of works there.

To be repentant in my thinking is to realize that one is a lost hopeless sinner who can not work anything for his salvation. This recognizing it in himself and to God. He recognizes he is without hope. There is another aspect of this which is trust in the work of Christ instead.

Ritewinger said...

The thing that struck me in that quote was it doesn't say under who's power one would turn from sin. If it's implied that one can do this on thier own then I can't agree, we only repent through the power of the Spirit

L P Cruz said...


I agree with you. The willingness and commitment to Christ are two things that we do not do and have. It is the promise to ammend one's self rather than the simple admition that we are undone and no hope without Christ's sacrifice. It throws us back to self and infact it can even be a source of pride - ie that we are committed to Christ than others or we are more committed than others.

PB said...

For me too Lito, no comfort in any defition advocating a human based 'resolution' or 'commitment'.

More comfort to be found (I think) with the definition given in the Augsburg Confession [XII.]

'true repentance... to have contrition and sorrow, or terror about sin, and yet at the same time to believe in the gospel and absolution that sin is forgiven and grace is obtained through Christ'

i.e contrition and faith = repentance, and both these worked by the word, law and gospel.


L P Cruz said...

Amen PB,

Thanks for dropping by. In fact the definition of this Calvinistic guy of repentance is pretty Roman I might say.

Steve said...

Jesus provided the best example of what repentence when he compared the Pharisee and the sinner. The sinner's prayer of "Lord have mercy on me". This is true repentence in that we acknowledge our sinfulness and our complete enablity to do anything about it.

Repentence that requires me to change is not Christian repentence. It's the repentence of a works based religion.

Repentence is also our response to Christ. Christ saved me before I even repented my sins.

L P Cruz said...


I would not even couch it in "response" language although realization of our utter sinfulness and lost is happening in us as the Law crushes us and the Gospel sets us free.

The difference between Calvinism and Lutheranism is that in the former, all the gifts of God - repentance and faith, are looked at as an "obedience" to the Gospel.

But I whole heartedly agree with you - in what you said - Jesus died for me before I was born so, even before I could do anything towards his Glory.