Forgiving vs. Repentance



Is there a difference between forgiving and repenting?

Peter asked
Jesus how many times he was supposed to forgive someone. Jesus replied
by saying seventy times seven.

That is a lot of forgiveness.

What does
the word forgive really mean? It means to lay aside, or let go, to send
away, according to the Greek translation.

If I sin against my brother
and ask forgiveness and he forgives me am I forgiven? The answer is
yes; however unless I repent of my sin I will most likely repeat the

What does it mean to repent? The Greek translates: to
think differently, to exercise the mind, to perceive or consider.

other words, to repent is to change our way of thinking about that thing
we transgressed in. My brother will forgive me for sinning against him
but unless I repent of my sin I will most likely repeat it because I
have not changed my mind about it.

To repent is to re-think and have a
change of heart.

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature
(creation, new person): old things are passed away; all things are
become new (2 Cor. 5:17). By asking forgiveness I may merely be trying
to restore myself to the one I sinned against or ease my conscience.

repenting I am saying I will never do that again because I now look at
it through new eyes and have a change of heart.

When I give an alter call at the end of our shows I see many young
people coming to be forgiven of their transgressions. What I seldom see
is true repentance.

For godly sorrow worketh to repentance to salvation
and brings no regret (2 Cor. 7:10). If those who come forward for
forgiveness would not only ask God to forgive them and restore their
relationship with God, but to also repent from this sin then they would
not have to address the same issue again and again.

In John chapter 8, a
women caught in the act of adultery was brought to Jesus. They wanted to
stone her but Jesus said, He that is without sin among you, let him
first cast a stone at her. The men went out leaving the women to face
Jesus, who told her “Neither do I condemn you, go and sin no more”.
What He was saying was, do not go away merely forgiven, but go and live
a life of repentance.

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