Or, in the words of Jesus, “Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.”
Seems to me that we have blunted the meaning of, “REPENT!” with all sorts of rationalizations:
“That is just the way I am,”
“I am doing the best I can and one’s best is all that God requires,”
“Overall, I am walking in the light, I just have this one problem.”
Repent means change. It does not mean doing the thing less often. A thief does not repent by only holding up 1 store a month instead of 1 a day. Overall, our approach denies the “power of godliness” to change one completely.
We have substituted the power of a magic partaking of the Lord’s Supper for repentance. We seem to believe that if we really think really hard about Jesus’ sacrifice while we partake, and pray hard and feel real, real sorry for our failings (lets not use that 3 letter “S” word), then we will be OK. But, then we did that last week, and the week before and….
And we continue in the same sinful habits, maybe less often: “I’m getting better!”
Sounds a lot like 2 Cor 7, doesn’t it, where Paul contrasts this with the godly sorrow that works repentance and calls it a sorrow of the world that leads to death.
One may slip and fall after he repents, may even do so more than once. But, repentance means one stops the wrong behavior. God gives us the power to do so, the power of Christ in us, the hope of Glory. We, on the other hand, keep one foot in the pleasures and proclaim, “I am making progress.”
JUST SAY NO.
For see what earnestness this godly grief has produced in you, but also what eagerness to clear yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what longing, what zeal, what punishment! At every point you have proved yourselves innocent in the matter. (2Cor 7:11).
Do you not know that if you yield yourselves to any one as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness? (Rom 6:16)