Metanoia, a Changed Mind
The word “repent” is more than saying sorry, doing penance, or not sinning. It is a radical change of mind. The heart follows, and it transforms our behavior.
It is used as a verb of motion and mental activity, said Paul Washer. Repentance is an internal change of mind and heart rather than mere sorrow for sin or mere improvement of behavior, according to John Piper.
1. True repentance seeks the mind of Christ
Before one’s conversion through Christ, the mind of a sinner is hostile towards God. It refuses to submit (Romans 1:21; 8:7). When we receive Christ, our soul regenerates. The light of Jesus illuminates our mind and we see things of God.
“I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.“
2. Repentance is our response to God’s love
As our response to God’s love, we choose to pursue a holy and pleasing life. We hate what God hates and love what God loves. As a result, our minds and heart are excited to pursue the “mind of Christ.” (1 Cor. 2:16)
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what the will of God is, what is right and acceptable and perfect.
WE HATE WHAT GOD HATES AND LOVE WHAT GOD LOVES.
3. We “Bears Fruit” as evidence of faith in Christ
The evidence of faith is you continue to grow in repentance. You cannot bear fruit without Jesus. Likewise, a sinful lifestyle leads to bad fruit. Our part is to respond to God’s call to bear fruit and live life to the fullest.
A sinful lifestyle leads to bad fruit
“Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.“
Don’t expect a perfect one-time repentance
Ask Jesus to give you a heart that seeks “holiness and fear God.” Holy fear is inspired by love and reverence for Jesus and His sacrifice.
“For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins…“