Salvation Series : Lesson #2
In the last lesson we looked at the need for salvation, the way of salvation, and the knowledge of salvation. This lesson will deal with the subject of Repentance. This is a very important subject in regards to salvation. There are many false teachings today about this very subject. Some will claim that you do not even have to repent, while others claim that it is a work or penance that is done to earn salvation. Now let us see what the word of God has to say about repentance.
Many times in the New Testament we find a verse telling someone that they need to repent or that repentance is necessary. Let us look at a few.
Luke 13:5 “I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.”
Acts 17:30 “And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent repent:”
Romans 2:4 “Or despises thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?”
2 Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”
So we have seen that Jesus Christ preached repentance and Paul said that God commanded it. Also we have seen how that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance and that God is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. I think these verses plainly show us that repentance is a scriptural truth and is going to be a part of salvation.
So the next question becomes what exactly is repentance? Repentance in regard to salvation is a change of heart and attitude about sin and yourself and turning to God for salvation.
In the last lesson we saw that man has a need of salvation because he is a sinner (Romans 3:23). Once you realize then you must make a choice. You will either receive Jesus Christ as your savior or you will pay for your own sins because without him you will not make it to heaven.
So where does repentance fit into this? When you see yourself as a sinner and you realize that Jesus Christ is the only way to be saved, you go to God and admit that you are a sinner and ask him to forgive your sins and ask him to save you trusting in the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ as your savior and he saves you. (Act 16: 30-31 ; Romans 10:9-13 ; Ephesians 2:8-9)
You have turned from yourself and your works to justify your sin before God and accepted the sacrifice offered by his Son the Lord Jesus Christ to save you. Therefore you have turned from sin unto God. Remember repentance is always toward something or to something, and in salvation it toward God. Let us look at a few verses that help us with this.
Acts 11:18 “When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.”
Acts 20:21 “Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.”
In one verse we see that it is repentance unto life and the other verse we see that it is repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ. Repentance is turning from yourself, your sin, your religion or works, and turning to God for salvation.
Now there is something else we see in Acts 20:21. Note that because this verse is doctrinally in the church age where salvation is by grace through faith and not of works (Ephesians 2:8-9), repentance is connected with faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ. Many will try to link repentance to works because of the phrase that John the Baptist used in Luke 3:8-15, but we must remember that this was before the church age had started and the Lord Jesus Christ had not been crucified and raised from the dead. Therefore they were under both faith and works. But now in the church age we are saved by grace through faith.
2 Kinds of Repentance :
2 Corinthians 7:10 “For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.”
Now doctrinally you have to be careful with this verse because in the context it is the church that repented and got right with God about sin that was going on in the church. But we can make a spiritual application for showing the difference in repentance that leads to salvation and sorrow that leads to death.
The person who gets caught and goes to prison may be sorry he got caught but not sorry that he is a murder. This is the sorrow of the world which worketh death.
- An example of this would be Judas (Matthew 27:3-5)
But a person who is not just sorry they got caught but sees themselves as a sinner before God and repents and gets saved that is godly sorrow which worketh repentance to salvation.
- An example of this would be Peter (Luke 5:8)
Therefore repentance for us in the church age is a part of salvation, but it not a work or penance it is turning from sin toward God for salvation.
Salvation Series : Lesson #2 Handout
1) List some verses that show us that repentance is scriptural.
2) In regards to Salvation in the church age what is repentance?
3) Give some verses that show us that repentance is always to or toward something.
4) Why is it important that in Acts 20:21 it connects repentance with faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ?
5) In 2 Corinthians 7:10 we see 2 kinds of repentance. Briefly explain the difference when making a spiritual application with this verse.
6) Give an example from the Bible of each of the 2 kinds of repentance spoken of in 2 Corinthians 7:10.