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Can someone repent too much? The simple answer, no.

Sure you can repent so much that it starts to lose meaning. You can “turn back to God” and immediately pull a 180. But that’s just lip service and not true repentance.

But the question really isn’t completely answered yet. The truth is that you can repent all you want, you can live a life of continual repentance, and you still won’t be any closer to God.

Don’t freak out just yet. Let me explain.

Repentance is seeking to repay the debt of sin. Forgiveness releases us from that debt, but we do pull a 180. Each of us immediately goes back to sinning. This cycle of repentance and forgiveness will continue as long as there is sin to react to.

We can repent all we want, but we will still be trapped by sin. We cannot, by our own design, free ourselves from this cycle or the sin that weighs us down. No amount of repentance, penance, sacrifice, or asceticism will wipe the slate clean and reunite us with God.

There is only one way out. That way is Jesus Christ.

Repentance doesn’t make us right with God. Grace does. Penance doesn’t pay back the debt we’ve incurred against our Lord. Christ’s death does. Sacrifice doesn’t make an atonement for our sins. Jesus blood does. Asceticism doesn’t bring us closer to God. He does. This is the invitation we have, that through Christ’s sacrifice we can enter into his presence forever.

So how sorry is too sorry? You can’t be sorry enough to make any difference.

But if repentance is pointless, why bother? I didn’t say it was pointless, I just said it couldn’t save you. I turn back to God because I love him. I love him because he loves me. Repentance now isn’t about making myself right with God, about clearing the debt. Christ already did that.

As a child of God, repentance is about walking with him, staying close to the God who gave everything to be with me. I’m sorry for my sins not because they hurt him emotionally, but because they killed him physically. My sin nailed him to the cross. My sin crucified my God.

There’s some song that says it wasn’t the nails that held him to the tree, but it was his love for me. There’s no way to kill God without his permission. I didn’t take Jesus’ life, he gave it for me.

No matter how sorry you are, you can’t heal the division between you and God. No matter how sorry you are, you can’t keep Christ from dying on the cross. Christ did die on the cross, and his death heals that division between you and God, if you only have the faith to walk with Him.

How do you get this faith? It’s already yours…

Posted with : The Way