Who is the one who makes repentance happen?John The Baptist And The Castle by Psycho Crow

Is it us?

Is it God?

Is is some sort of cooperative effort?

If faith in God depends on this phenomenon, then it would seem that we ought know a little bit about it.


What are your thoughts on the subject?



10 Responses

  1. It’s pretty much all God, though I guess in a way, it’s both too.

    God calls, predestines, justifies… in other words, He gives us a new heart and quickens our spirit with His own. Only AFTER which will we have the ability to repent and put our faith in Him. Once we have the ability to do so, we are to obey Jesus’ command to repent and get on board with the Kingdom of God. In our own strength, we can do nothing. We have a responsibility to repent (as clearly shown in Scripture), but we don’t have the ability to do so.

  2. If we demystify “repent” and call it “changing your mind” then it would seem to come down to a response by us (enabled by the Spirit, but essentially by us) to the Spirit and Truth.

  3. St. Paul tells us in Romans that God leads us to repentance.

    I believe that this is key. We would never go there on our own.

    Repenting is believeing. Believing is repenting. God’s Law and His Gospel create in us repentance.

    Our part in the equation is a weak one. Just look at those areas in your life where you struggle with a particular sin, or sins.

    We constantly fail. We constantly stray. But the Lord causes our hearts to repent and He once again brings us home, carrying us.

    And it is not a one time thing, repentance. We see it as the life of the believer. Repentance and forgiveness. Over and over and over…all throughout our lives.

    So I guess I agree in part with you guys, but I have to emphasize that our role in it all is a response to what the Spirit is doing.

    I could be wrong (again).

    Thanks Daruis, Alden.

  4. First of all the Christian religion is never an “if/then” religion. That’s the religion of the fallen world and the operational frame work such always read things through, even faith and repentance. The Christian faith is an “because/therefore”.

    I say that because the if/then religion in its false Christian form cannot safely say and leave the Gospel as “…it’s true for you whether you believe it or not…”. For they see faith as a work fundamentally, the coin of exchange with God. Now they will caveat it as, “well God gives you the coin”, thus give God a tip for doing it and say, “See monorgism” (nothing is further from the truth). That’s how they sneak in works salvation under monorgism!

    The “because/therefore” of Christianity, however, can with great certitude and scandal say, “…it’s true for you whether you believe it or not…”

    The former (if/then) exegetes Scripture, the later has Scripture exegete us! Big differences!

    So repentance is solely from God. This repentance, God’s Word exegeting us, is not a (as Luther says) a paltry confession of sins like confessing sins committed, but holistically confesses all that one IS (ever present tense) is sin, thought, word and deed, good or evil. This repentance and faith never parses out AT ALL, “this is a sin over here and this over there is not a sin” (false repentance).

    True repentance is exegeted BY the Word itself and confesses as Paulson says well You oh God have right and true words, You speak the truth of things, of me, etc…Your Words of Law and of Gospel are correct words.

    So it is one hundred percent from God. Remember God’s word alone creates out of nothing. It would be like just after creation when out of absolutely nothing God said, “Let there BE light…” and the light turns around and says, “Now what part did I play in that?”

    The nothingness of the fallen sinner is like the nothingness of nothing and void, and it tries to figure out “what part it plays” in creation. It doesn’t, it still has not gotten use to the fact, it is dead it just doesn’t know it yet.



  5. The most smallest and minuscule ability on my part to contribute to my own salvation is an ability about which I would be able to boast.

  6. Paul tells us that the “Goodness of God” LEADS us to repentance…

    Our Good Shepard LEADS us in paths of righteousness…

    When Peter was in prison, the angel poked him to wake him up…but, I don’t think he actually DRAGGED him out of the prison…

    I’m just say’n…

  7. God shines the light, the Holy Spirit convicts us of our sins, Jesus shows the forgiveness. We must repent, ask for the strength to do so, and be shown what to repent of. Jesus started out his ministry saying,”Repent”, He was telling us to do it.

  8. “A penitent heart is a rare thing and a great grace; one cannot produce it by thinking about sin and hell. Only the Holy Spirit can impart it.”

    (What Luther says: 3859)

  9. Pelagians, semi-pelagians, arminians and all theologies of glory will always see the statements of Christ like “repent” as commands, “ergo”, goes fallen human reasoning, “We are told something to do”. The heretic Pelagious used the same line of argumentation with Augustine as did the heretics with Luther.

    What they don’t see is that it is the creative Word like, “let there be”, that is calling it into being not commanding the utterly bound in will to do anything. For the utterly bound in will “doer”, fallen old Adam to “do” repentance is the very opposite of repentance and in fact to flee from God not toward him. That’s why Christ is called the Logos, a pregnant Greek Word that is literally saying the Divine utterance. The incarnate Logos, the Divine utterance or Divine breath, just like in the beginning as John indicates of Christ in Creation – NOW comes incarnate literally and calls out into the nothingness, the nihilo, and creates ex nihilo out of the nothing (the sinner) – over which the Spirit had been brooding/hovering.

    That’s why Creation is a picture of baptism involving the entire Trinity, that’s why Jesus, the Word of God, the Divine utterance, the Logos was put INTO the baptismal waters during John’s baptism of Him – again we see the Trinity in action.

    It is as Luther says because God’s love loves the unlovable, the nothingness (the sinner) He at the Cross shows Himself to be a true and only Creator. For in Christ’s suffering on the Cross for the nothing, the sins of the world, He calls into being that which now IS.


  10. EVERYTHING God requires of us, He gives to us in Christ… that would include repentance.

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