THE BIBLE PLAN OF SALVATION - Repentance

REPENTANCE

Sincere, heartfelt repentance is the first step in the plan of salvation. Jesus said, "Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish" (Luke 13:3) . Paul declares, that God

"commandeth all men every where to repent" (Acts 17:30 ) . The message of repentance is to be preached to all nations. Jesus said that "repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem " (Luke 24:47) . There can be no experience of true Bible salvation without genuine repentance. Repentance must come first.

TURNING FROM SIN TO GOD

Repentance is a turning away from all sin. The Bible declares, "He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy" (Proverbs 28:13) . Godly sorrow for sin is the only motivating force for real repentance. "For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation" (II Corinthians 7:10 ) .

Repentance also means turning to God in faith, praying for forgiveness and cleansing from all sin. The repentant person confesses to God that he is a sinner and asks for forgiveness. In turn, God promises to forgive and abundantly pardon when a person fully repents. The Old Testament contains this wonderful promise: "Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. (Isaiah 55:6-7). The New Testament makes a similar promise to the church today. "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness"

(I John 1:9).

DEATH TO SELF TO SIN

The gospel is the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Apostle Paul said, "I declare unto you the gospel....by which also ye are saved....how that Christ died for our sins....and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures"

(I Corinthians 15:1-4) . We must obey Christ's gospel, or follow Christ's pattern, in order to be saved. (Romans 6:17 -18; 10:16 ;

II Thessalonians 1:8; 1 Peter 4:17) .

We must experience a death, a burial, and a resurrection. In the act of repentance we die out to sin, the world and self (Romans 6:2) and we ask Jesus Christ to become the Lord of our life. In God's order, repentance must procede water baptism and the receiving of the Holy Ghost. Before there can be either a burial or a resurrection, there must first be a death.

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