Do We Find Repenting Hard to Do?

by Perry Hall

Do we find it hard to deeply and truly repent because we are basically a "good person" who has literally been "going to church" our whole life? How do we get better at doing the basic and primary requirement of repenting because the kingdom of God is near (Matthew 3:2)?

Why else do we have difficulty truly repenting? Biblically, children are "safe" having been born without sin; and are by God's design not yet sinners. But when that time comes, when we become accountable for our actions and sins, where do we begin?

Process this, that no one is literally a "Christian" their "whole life".

We haven't even literally been "religious" our "whole life", since religion etymologically and therefore literally means, "again-connected" as in a ligament becoming reconnected through surgery.

We haven't even been "in the church" our whole life because only those cleansed by blood are in the church of God which is purchased by Jesus (Acts 20:28). We aren't "in the church" of Christ unless we are "in the body" of Christ.

So what does that leave? What have we been doing our whole life, from childhood to now, before becoming a blood-bought Christian? I'm speaking here to a particular type of person and not to those raised without God.

Have we been "raised in the pew"; and when the time comes we walk out the door because we are basically a "good person" who has literally been "going to church" our whole and don't see the need for forgiveness? No one can be forgiven without repenting! Have we processed that no one is good (Romans 3:10-12)?

If not raised in the pew, then what?

Do we see how we are being prepared - or have been prepared - by godly parents raising us up in the training and instruction of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4), to be raised up in Christ? The day of preparation becomes realized when the day of repentance comes and we are baptized to become a disciple and Christian. Then we start preparing to live in God's goodness for our whole remaining life.

Jesus told a very religious person, "You are not far from the kingdom of God" (Mark 12:34). Repentance is made harder when we think we already are where we need to be.

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