I often hear Christians say, "The goodness of God leads you to repentance." They say preaching about how good God is and how much He loves us is what brings people to Jesus. However, that's actually preaching only part of the gospel. If you read Romans 2:4-5 in context, it states, "Don't you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can't you see that His kindness is intended to turn you from your sin? But because you are stubborn and refuse to turn from your sin, you are storing up terrible punishment for yourself. For a day of anger is coming, when God's righteous judgment will be revealed."
God's goodness is His longsuffering with us. He waits and gives people many years to repent. Sadly, many ignore His goodness.
Second Corinthians 7:10 (NKJV) says, "For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death."
The New Living Translation says it like this: "For the kind of sorrow God wants us to experience leads us away from sin and results in salvation. There's no regret for that kind of sorrow. But worldly sorrow, which lacks repentance, results in spiritual death."
We don't hear this verse quoted much today. Godly sorrow is good because it works to turn us from our sin and toward God. When we really repent from our hearts, we change. We no longer want to stay in that ungodly relationship; do the old, harmful things we used to do; or participate in a sinful activity that breaks our fellowship with the Lord. True repentance is coupled with a fear of God. When you are tempted to sin, ask yourself ... How can I sin tonight and have confidence tomorrow that the Lord is going to bless my business? How can I sin and then approach the Lord full of faith?
Sin not only deceives us and dulls our hearing from God but it destroys our ability to exercise faith in God and receive from Him. The fear of the Lord is to depart from evil. Make it your aim to grow in the fear of the Lord.
Bill Wiese is the author of New York Times bestselling book, 23 Minutes In Hell, the story of his life-changing visit to hell in 1998. Bill has since authored six additional book titles and continues to share his experience around the world. He and his wife Annette founded Soul Choice Ministries in late 2006 and have dedicated their lives to reaching the unsaved. For more information about Bill Wiese and Soul Choice Ministries, please visit us at: soulchoiceministries.org/. You can find more of Bill's teachings at youtube.com/user/BillWieseTV.
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