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Sentence Sermons (Christian Inspiration) #25 --- Repentance

Updated on March 8, 2011

Quotations on Repentance

I would define true repentance to be a genuine sorrow for sin, attended with a real inclination to undo, if it were possible, all we have sinfully done, and consequently an endeavor as far as we have it in our power to counteract the consequences of our form of evil conduct; with a determination of mind through Divine Grace to wait for the future in newness of life in evidence to be sincere by being meet for repentance; that is by all holy disposition, words and actions.

—A.N. Goforth, Houston Daily Post, Houston, Texas, Dec. 30, 1912.

Repentance means forsaking all that stands between you and God or between you and anybody else.

—Lockett Adair, Dallas Morning News, Dallas, Texas, Jan. 6, 1908.

Repentance is the Gethsemane of the soul that leads to the cross.

—Charles T. Alexander, The Baptist Chronicle, Alexandria, La., June 9, 1910.

Repentance looks at the past with regret but it also looks to the future with resolution. The sincerity of repentance is measured not by sorrow over the past but by determination to rid our lives of that sin forever.

—Charles L. Allen, The Atlanta Constitution, Atlanta, Ga., March 27, 1957.

Because of a lack of understanding of a principle of repentance, some hinder themselves. This principle is self-acceptance. If we have a "past" we have repented of, a part of this repentance is to forgive yourself. To accept yourself in your repentance is to forgive yourself. To accept yourself in your repentant state is to forget the problems you have repented of.

—James A. Cullimore, Messenger of Glory, Sutton Coldfield, England, Jan. 13, 1963.

Confession without renunciation doesn’t amount to anything. If a man confesses sin and keeps living in sin, he did not mean anything by his confession. And if a man stops living in sin without confessing it, that doesn’t mean anything, for that’s reformation. But if he confesses and forsakes, the forsaking shows the confession was genuine. So it is no good to confess it if you don’t forsake it, vice versa.

—Billy Sunday, Jackson Daily News, Jackson, Miss., Jan. 2, 1925.

Repentance means an honest confession on one's own failure of duty; his misplaced energies; his lack of loyalty to the highest and noblest impulses of heart and soul. Who can fail to feel that his life has not been what it should have been after an honest and careful self-examination. And all the more is the spirit of repentance urged upon us when we have sinned against opportunity of coming into closer fellowship with God.

—William T. Capers, Houston Post-Dispatch, Houston, Texas, March 10, 1924.

If you have wronged a man you must repair the injury before God will hear you. If you owe him a debt you must cancel it. The trouble with a great many people is right along this line. They don't pay their debts and God will never listen to a man who refuses to be honest. Let us be honest and God will hear and answer our prayers.

—Dwight L. Moody, The Atlanta Constitution, Atlanta, Ga., Nov. 5, 1895.

Tears of repentance always moisten the road of restitution.

—Ernest C. Wareing, Western Christian Advocate, Cincinnati, Ohio, Jan. 14, 1926.

Repentance is to turn from the wrongs of the past to a new vision of our duties for the future, and to make our lives conform to the new light within us. It is not something with which we can clothe ourselves today and lay aside tomorrow. ... Repentance is a dawning in consciousness that the life we have been living in the past is out of harmony with the law of God, with an added desire that so far as the future is concerned we will make our lives conform to that law.

—Oliver C. Dalby, Liahona the Elders Journal, Independence, Mo., June 7, 1921.

Repentance is a full and perfect apology to God for having sinned. It severs all love for and fellowship with sin, and binds the heart unconditionally to righteousness.

—W. James Robinson, The Western Messenger, Kansas City, Mo., Aug. 16, 1918.

Repentance is a change in mind, conversion is a change of action. One enables a man to think right, the other to act right.

—George W. Clarke, Lake Charles American-Press, Lake Charles, La., Feb. 16, 1925.

The first fruit of faith in God and in Jesus Christ is repentance of sin. Sin against God is the transgression of His law. Conviction of sin comes through faith in God and His law. Conviction leads to humility and repentance and obedience. Sorrow for sin is not of itself true repentance, which comprehends not only regret for the past, but reformation for the future. It includes determination to forsake and refrain from sin. As the Apostle Paul expressed it, “For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of.” (2 Corinthians 7:10.) When the sinner is sorry because he has been found out, that is not true repentance. Grief is an element of repentance because when a believer perceived he has broken a law of God, he feels remorse. But unless he resolves to turn away from that transgression, and not repeat it, he does not reach full repentance.

—Charles W. Penrose, Elders Journal, Chattanooga, Tenn., Feb. 1, 1905.

As naturally as one round of the ladder follows another, so also does repentance follow faith. We are all weak, frail creatures; we all err, and many times we do wrong unknowingly when the light of truth breaks into our souls and discloses our follies, we desire to overcome then. True repentance consists not only in forsaking evil, but it also implies a reformation of life.

—Ben E. Rich, Southern Star, Chattanooga, Tenn., Sept. 30, 1899.

True repentance shows forth faith in our life by love. It shows in the way we serve God, that there is a genuine renunciation of our loyalty to our former life. ... There is a great difference in repentance and just changing your life habits. Friends, repentance starts inside and works outward. But to change your former life means only that you have cleaned up the outside.

—Walt Ellis, Amarillo Daily News, Amarillo, Texas, June 25, 1983.

Repentance of sin comprises a genuine sorrow for past transgressions, and a resolute endeavor to seek divine assistance in avoiding sin, in resisting temptation, and in a determined effort to live in accordance with the laws of individual purity and righteousness.

—James E. Talmage, Millennial Star, Liverpool, England, Jan. 22, 1925.

Repentance is the act that changes our sinful wills from their centripetal attitude to one that is centrifugal. And without the power of God exerted on our behalf there can never come this act, since repentance of itself could not enter against the centripetal power.

—John D. Freeman, Baptist and Reflector, Nashville, Tenn., July 31, 1930.

Repentance, without the offender making all the restitution that is in the power of his hands to make, is as dead as faith without works.

—Charles A. Callis, Liahona the Elders Journal, Independence, Mo., Jan. 12, 1926.

Repentance is more than sorrow for sin; it is a reparation for sin, not only in our own lives, but in the lives of others.

—Fulton J. Sheen, North-Central Louisiana Register, Alexandria, La., Feb. 18, 1955.

Eternal values do not change. Our acceptance of them does. Being human, we need periodically to inquire again into our degree of such acceptance. Are we drifting away or toward that healing fellowship with Christ? Such reappraisal will restore to us a proper perspective toward life and bring us back to a proper standard of values. ... No one lives the perfect life. Amends need frequently be made. Repentance includes a regret for living the lower life in the past with a determination to move again to the higher life with God. Repentance and confession are a cleansing of the soul, a beginning again. In repentance we close, through the grace of God, the faulty accounts of the past. ... Ours is a generation requiring skills. Skill comes through discipline. ... The imperative need for skills is in the field of moral and spiritual values, the field of relationships with one another, and most of all, with God.

—William C.F. Hayes, Milwaukee Sentinel, Milwaukee, Wis., March 26, 1952.

Repentance signifies that God's grace has appeared, offering salvation to all, and that He leaves the individual free to accept or reject. Genuine repentance leads to life. It results from Godly sorrow. The works that follow it show the working of deep sorrow for wrongs done. There is no feigning; for the goodness of God strikes too deep into our hearts to work a repentance that brings regret. Buried with Christ and raised with Him we enjoy new relationships controlled by love and wisdom from above. Love is predominant. It binds us in the one faith. It is the moving principle of all service that meets the approval of God. It distinguishes us from the world, being unfeigned and fervent in our attitude toward each other.

—W.J. Johnson, Monroe Morning World, Monroe, La., June 16, 1930.

Repentance is impossible to one who does not consider God's attitude towards sin. He must know that sin is the transgression of the laws of God and that any disposition to commit such violation is contrary to divine control of His universe.

—F.M. McConnell, Baptist Standard, Dallas, Texas, Nov. 24, 1938.

How often should we repent? Repentance is not an initial act which is to be forgotten after we yield to Christ. It is a continuous attitude toward sin, that stays with us and grows. The closer we grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ the more conscious we become of our sins and the need for repentance to continuously be a part of our Christian lives.

—A.W. Smart, The Shreveport Times, Shreveport, La., Oct. 13, 1968.

No prayer has ever made much progress which has not had the way cleared by repentance.

—Roy L. Smith, Christian Advocate, Chicago, Ill., March 25, 1943.

The longer you delay confessing a sin, the more you persuade yourself it is not a sin.

—Roy L. Smith, Tampa Morning Tribune, Tampa, Fla., Sept. 16, 1942.


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