Repentance

“All descriptions of Arminians and workmongers seem to regard repentance as a something preceding spiritual life, and exacted as a condition of salvation, but the Scriptures assure us that it is the gift of God, and that it is a sense of the goodness of God entertained by quickened sinners that leads them to repentance; a vital principle in them leading them to a godly sorrow, which worketh repentance unto life, which needeth not to be repented of. The repentance enjoined on these converts at Pentecost, was that they should renounce Judaism, confess their sins, and rely alone on the risen Redeemer for salvation, to take his yoke, own his name, obey his commands, follow him as their leader, and honor him as their God and Savior.” (Repentance, 1865)

preacher repent

“From the confused theory of Arminians of a legal repentance grows also the doctrine of obligatory repentance. That repentance which is unto life and is connected with godly sorrow is the gift of God; it proceeds from a godly principle implanted in the heart, and which cannot possibly flow from an ungodly source. Any sorrow or repentance that could come from an ungodly sinner’s heart, or from any sinner’s heart before a godly principle is therein implanted, would be like the fountain from whence it emanates; ungodly. We search the law and gospel both in vain to find this obligatory repentance which is in so great demand among all the legal work-mongrel tribes of the Arminians. We do not wonder that our dear brother’s mind has been puzzled and perplexed to bring the obligation of repentance upon unregenerate sinners. We might as well speak of their obligation to remit their own sins as to procure their own repentance, seeing Christ alone is exalted to be a Prince and Savior, for to give, both the one and the other unto Israel.

It would be equally as proper and scriptural to speak of their obligation to be saved, to go to heaven, and to make themselves sons and heirs of God. But, does man’s inability to repent, or to believe, or even to keep from sinning, relieve him from his obligation to do so? Certainly not, if it can be found that such obligations are upon him. Now the sinner is one that has sinned. Sin is the transgression of the law; but where has the law under which the unregenerate sinner is held, either required him to repent or believe the gospel? The law truly forbids him to transgress, and holds him answerable for every transgression. Sin, not a want of repentance or faith, is what the sinner is condemned for.” – Gilbert Beebe (Repentance, 1865)

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