How did a knockoff Yahweh evolve in Israel, and how does a knockoff Jesus evolve in the church today? Both are the result of a hardened heart from the absence of true repentance.

Now, don’t get nervous. I know repentance has been preached in a way that produces bondage, but that isn’t biblical repentance. The truth is we need repentance, because without it we can’t experience the life God has for us.

If we look at what the Bible says, we find that nearly every voice of the New Testament clearly and specifically says repentance is a necessary part of our life in Christ. The list of people who directly say this includes Peter, Paul, John, James, other disciples, Jesus Himself, and even God the Father. It is a major and unmistakably clear truth.

What this means is there can be no true faith in Jesus Christ without repentance from known sin. And what is sin? Sin is the antithesis of God’s best for us.

This means we cannot turn to Christ if we refuse to walk away from things like sexual immorality, gossip, and unforgiveness.

How can you say you’re a Christian and willfully hang on to these things? The fact is, there are over five hundred behavioral commands in the New Testament. God gives us these commands because He will never tolerate what can destroy you—He loves you too much.

But if we hold on to the sins Christ died to deliver us from, we have created a knockoff Jesus, and our faith is only imagined.

Biblical repentance is the ultimate act of humility, opening our lives to the wonder of God’s grace. In fact, God promises to give us grace when we humble ourselves (James 4, 1 Peter 5). That is why repentance is so important . . . we cannot be ashamed of it. Seekers and professing believers alike must know this. It is essential to our faith and salvation!

Repentance means changing our mind so deeply that it changes our personality from the core of our being. When we turn to Christ, He makes us brand new, giving us the grace to live like Him.

This is biblical repentance—it is the process of being recreated in Christ, reflecting God’s nature and goodness to our world. Is there any greater invitation?


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