Repent or Perish! – Arthur Pink

Repent or Perish!

by Arthur Pink

“Unless you repent—you too will all perish!” Luke 13:3

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These were the words of the incarnate Son of God. They have never been cancelled; nor will they be as long as this world lasts. Repentance is absolute and necessary if the sinner is to make peace with God (Isaiah 27:5), for repentance is the throwing down the weapons of rebellion against Him. Repentance does not save, yet no sinner ever was or ever will be saved without it. None but Christ saves—but an impenitent heart cannot receive Him.

A sinner cannot truly believe—until he repents. This is clear from the words of Christ concerning His forerunner, “For John came to you to show you the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes did. And even after you saw this, you did not repent and believe him” (Matthew 21:32).

It is also evident from His clarion call in Mark 1:15, “Repent—and believe the gospel.” This is why the apostle Paul testified “repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ” (Acts 20:21). Make no mistake on this point dear reader, God “now commands all men everywhere to repent” (Acts 17:30).

In requiring repentance from us, God is pressing His righteous claims upon us. He is infinitely worthy of supreme love and honor, and of universal obedience. This we have wickedly denied Him. Both an acknowledgment and amendment of this is required from us. Our disaffection for Him and our rebellion against Him are to be owned and made an end of. Thus repentance is a heartfelt realization of how dreadfully I have failed, all through my life, to give God His rightful place in my heart and daily walk. The righteousness of God’s demand for my repentance, is evident if we consider the heinous nature of sin. Sin is a renouncing of Him who made me. It is refusing Him His right to govern me. It is the determination to please myself; thus, it is rebellion against the Almighty. Sin is spiritual lawlessness, and utter disregard for God’s authority. It is saying in my heart: “I do not care what God requires—I am going to have my own way! I do not care what God’s claim upon me is—I am going to be master over myself!” Reader, do you realize that this is how you have lived?

True repentance issues from a realization in the heart, wrought therein by the Holy Spirit, of the exceeding sinfulness of sin, of the awfulness of ignoring the claims of Him who made me, of defying His authority. It is therefore a holy hatred and horror of sin, a deep sorrow for it, and acknowledgment of it before God, and a heart-forsaking of it. Not until this is done will God pardon us.

“He who covers his sins shall not prosper! But whoever confesses and forsakes them shall have mercy” (Proverbs 28:13). In true repentance the heart turns to God and acknowledges, “My heart has been set upon a vain world, which could not meet the needs of my soul. I forsook You, the fountain of living waters, and turned unto broken cisterns that can hold no water. I now own and bewail my folly!” But more, it says, “I have been a disloyal and rebellious creature—but I will be so no longer. I now desire and determine with all my might to serve and obey You as my only Lord. I flee to You as my present and everlasting Portion!”

Reader, be you a professing Christian or not—it is repent or perish. For everyone of us, church members or otherwise, it is either turn—or burn! Turn from your course of self-will and self-pleasing; turn in brokenness of heart to God, seeking His mercy in Christ; turn with full purpose of heart to please and serve HIM—or be tormented day and night, forever and ever, in the Lake of Fire! Which shall it be? Oh, get down on your knees right now and beg God to give you the spirit of true repentance!

“Him has God exalted with His right hand to be a Prince and a Savior—to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins” (Acts 5:31). “Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death!” (2 Corinthians 7:10).

Arthur Pink

 

John Flavel – True repentance is a drop out of the eye of faith

The Whole Works of John Flavel Volume 1
Ah! Christian, canst thou look upon #Jesus as standing in thy room, to bear the wrath of a Deity for thee? Canst thou think on it, and not melt? That when thou, like Isaac, wast bound to the altar, to be offered up to justice, Christ, like the ram, was caught in the thicket, and offered in thy room. When thy sins had raised a fearful tempest, that threatened every moment to entomb thee in a sea of wrath, Jesus Christ was thrown over to appease that storm! Say, reader, can thy heart dwell one hour upon such a subject as this? Canst thou with faith, present Christ to thyself, as he was taken down from the cross, drenched in his own blood, and say, These were the wounds that he received for me; this is he that loved me, and gave himself for me: out of these wounds comes that balm that heals my soul; out of these stripes my peace: When he hanged upon the cross, he bore my name upon his breast, like the high priest. It was love, pure love, strong love to my poor soul ; to the soul of an enemy that drew him down from heaven, and all the glory he had there, to endure these sorrows in soul and body for me.
O then, for ever bless the Lord, that hath done that for you, which none else could do, and which he has done but for few be sides you.
John_flavel
The Whole Works of John Flavel Volume 1

Genuine Repentance Charles Spurgeon

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Genuine Repentance

True repentance has a distinct and constant reference to the Lord, Jesus Christ. If you repent of sin without looking to Christ, away with your repentance! If you are so lamenting your sin as to forget the Savior, you have need to begin all this work over again. Whenever we repent of sin we must have one eye upon sin and another upon the Cross. Or, better still, let us have both eyes upon Christ, seeing our sin punished in Him and by no means let us look at sin except as we look at Jesus. A man may hate sin just as a murderer hates the gallows – but this does not prove repentance. If I hate sin because of the punishment, I have not repented of sin – I merely regret that God is just. But if I can see sin as an offense against Jesus Christ and loathe myself because I have wounded Him, then I have a true brokenness of heart. If I see the Savior and believe that those thorns upon His head were plaited by my sinful words; If I believe that those wounds in His heart were pierced by my heart sins; If I believe that those wounds in His feet were made by my wandering steps and that the wounds in His hands were made by my sinful deeds – then I repent of sin after a right fashion. Only under the Cross can you repent. Repentance elsewhere is remorse which clings to the sin and only dreads the punishment. Let us then seek, under God, to have a hatred of sin caused by a sight of Christ’s love.

Charles Spurgeon