We must not confuse the important meaning of the word Repent. It does not merely mean to just stop the breaking of God’s Law, or to stop following doctrines that are false; but it also carries the deeper meaning, stating in 2 Corinthians 7:10 “… For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation…”
Repent: to feel pain or sorrow on account of something done of left undone, to feel regret.
Let us investigate whether it is important to Christ that we repent.
Firstly, we notice that the forerunner of Christ, first spoke the word “Repent” in his message. “Repent ye, for the kingdom of God is at hand“-Matthew 3:2 Further down in the scripture, we notice that John was seeking a genuine repentance. Many today repent, but it is not all from the heart, and that is the reason for so much backsliding. John said “Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance“- Matthew 3:8. Fruits meet for repentance, can be understood as “behavior/attitude that match repentance”. Many today rend the outside and have an outside appearance as Christians, but their hearts are not right with God. God requires of us, an upright heart. To repent calls for godly sorrow that it breaks the heart, which will cause weeping, mourning and fasting.
How Can We Repent?
Simply by crucifying the old man. The “old man” in this context, is of a sinful life, fleshly desires and devices of the Devil. Jesus came into this world, and his first message records “From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”- Matthew 4:17. Having been convicted with godly sorrow, we mourn, and seek forgiveness from God for all our sinful acts, thereby, receiving forgiveness/repentance from God. In every instance we find that the firs thing to start on the way to spiritual life is repentance. This may not be so pleasant at the time, but what a wonderful peace and satisfaction it brings to one’s heart.