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Have I Truly Repented If I Keep Sinning?

Core Christianity / Michael Horton & Adriel Sanchez
The Truth Network Radio
December 3, 2020 1:00 am

Have I Truly Repented If I Keep Sinning?

Core Christianity / Michael Horton & Adriel Sanchez

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December 3, 2020 1:00 am

Episode 589 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

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CoreChristianity.com

1. I am concerned about my repentance and whether it is genuine repentance. I have attended church all my life, but only truly understood the gospel and received Christ last year. I know I should hate sin, but there are many instances when I find myself loving the sin that I struggle with. Often, I just instinctively run to my sin, especially the ones I have been committing most of my life. Sometimes I also wonder to myself, “If I am truly born again, would I be committing so much sin?” 

2. I’m reading through the Bible this year and right now in the Books of the Chronicles and am once again struck with all the names that are recorded. Knowing that all Scripture is God-breathed and edifying,  what can I can take away from these lists of names as I read them?

3. Just how important is baptism? Must it be done immediately after repentance? Do I have to be baptized in order to be saved? 

4. If repentance is necessary for Christians, and repentance means to turn from sin, then does that make repentance a work that is necessary for our salvation? If so, how does this agree with the claim that we are saved by free grace through the body and blood of Christ? How do we know if we are truly repentant if we continue to commit the same sins?  

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A certain church is telling me that whenever someone repents, they must be baptized. Is that true. That's just one of the questions will be answering on today's addition of core Christianity this is Bill Meyer along with Pastor Israel Sanchez and this is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. Would love to hear from you. If you have a question. Here's the phone number is 833 the core that's 1-833-843-2673 and you can also email us with your question at questions at core, Christianity.com. You can post your question on our Facebook page or our Instagram account now.

We often start this program with the good news story and we have one for you today in the small town of Lulu Georgia resident Amanda Browning says she came to visit and she never left.

Amanda says I fell in love with this town from the very beginning and she now owns Amanda's farm to fork restaurant and she says she uses food as a way to connect with others, but Amanda acknowledges that a meal is a luxury that not everyone can afford so outside her restaurant.

She has a blessing box. It works by donations from anybody in the community who can help things like canned goods, fresh veggies, toiletries and socks are inside. Amanda says it's open 24 seven. And anybody can stop and get whatever they need. That's cool. She's doing this just outside of her restaurant thinking about those who maybe don't have the means to be able to come in beautiful story. Let's get to our first question of the day and this one is an email that came in from Matthew he says, I'm concerned about my repentance and whether it is genuine.

I've attended church all my life but only truly understood the gospel and received Christ last year. I know I should hate sin. There are many instances when I find myself loving the sin that I struggle with. Often I just instinctively run to my sin, especially the ones I've been committing most of my life.

Sometimes I also wonder to myself if I'm truly born again would I be committing so much sin. You know I had that same question that you have brother. I remember years ago praying to the Lord, crying out to him. I had been walking with Jesus for probably eight or nine months and just thinking okay why is it that I still have these these sinful thoughts and ideas like it if I'm truly born again if I'm saved surely surely I would not have had that you just can't be the case everywhere I would go with certain embarrassing, but I would go around the people in my church and just kind of catch him. You know after the copy obligate you know, do you ever struggle with sinful thoughts are or what not just the kind is it like it is this normal and I think people thought it was. I was weird but anyways I I I go to Paul's words in Galatians chapter 5 where he says, I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh for the desires of the flesh are against the spirit may talking about your flesh.

There my flesh. He said we still have these desires these passions which are against the desires of the spirit night you nothing about your spirit is not a battle between your flesh and your spirit you talking about the Holy Spirit. There is talking to believers. The born-again believer. Since you're still going to have this battle. It's absolutely clear in Romans chapter 7 MEP talks about this there and any uses himself as the example he says in Romans chapter 7.

Beginning in verse 21. So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right evil lies close at hand friend delight in the law of God in my interbeing but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members wretched man that I Matthew I think we can all say amen to that wretched man that I am who will deliver me from this body of death thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord, so that I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin is this battle that you're experiencing Matthew you feel is the normal Christian life is what Paul experienced.

It's what we all feel and experience. So I think the goal is realizing in this like not questioning the fact that you are born again that you belong to Jesus you have faith in Jesus belong to him. Your your United to him that in and of itself is a work of the Holy Spirit, and so you should view yourself. Matthew is one who is a lie from the dead. Paul talks about this in Romans six through eight. I would encourage you take some time this afternoon or this week to read Romans six through eight to meditate upon it to know your new identity in Jesus Christ that there has been this definitive break between you and say now that doesn't mean that there's knocking to continue to be the struggle struggle with the flesh, that's a reality.

But here's the other reality to renew creation in Jesus Christ by faith in Jesus.

You have been credited with the righteousness of Christ.

You are alive from the dead. As Paul says you you belong to God in every part of your body, the members of your body belong to the Lord for his service and so were in this struggle to the day that we die was just talking to someone yesterday about this it out how historically the church is referred to Christians on earth.

Now the church on earth now as the church militant the church militant.

Why will because the were the church at war against the world the flesh and the devil. The sinful inclinations of our flesh, that the worldly system that's been taken captive by Satan to do his will, were resisting that one day working to be the church triumphant, but is not to be here right now during this present evil age, it's going to be when were in the presence of the Lord.

Matthew, so don't be discouraged. Continue to fight the good fight to cling to Jesus and to rest in the fact that you belong to him by faith, and that day by day he's in a sanctify you to be a slow process is not always the way we would like it to be put continue to be committed to Christ to his word to being a good church listening to preaching, praying, opening up the Scriptures so to the spirit do those things that you know get a bear good fruit that are going to nourish you spiritually continue down that path further noted that the Lord has you Matthew, thanks so much for your question. Member will be praying for you to with this struggle that all of us so face. This is core Christianity with pastor Adm. Sanchez and Israel, a question came in through our website at core, Christianity.com/radio. This was from Timothy and he says I been reading through the Bible this year and right now I'm in the book of Chronicles and I'm once again struck with all the names that are recorded knowing that all Scripture is God breathed and edifying.

What can I take away from these lists of names as I read them.

Well I think they're a great place to get like the names for your future children potentially for that candidate will obviously like God cares about families and genealogy you think you see this early in Genesis. You see this throughout the Scriptures to see this at the beginning of the Gospels. Part of this I think is tracing that promise. It's given in Genesis chapter 3 verse 15 more talks about the seed of the woman crushing the head of the serpent God cares about the holy family. All of Scripture from Genesis to Revelation is tracing that family and and ultimately the seed Paul talks about this in Galatians being Jesus and so I recognize that those are those chapters in the Bible that a lot of times we just sort of skip over and we think okay there's nothing here for me. I got a confession the other night reading through the book of Genesis with our kids for family devotions and I got to that early genealogy and jettison about what makes skip over chapter so I'm even guilty of this.

Maybe I should go back and just ahead. God cares about family. He cares about his people, and you have that promise given to people way back to the beginning of Genesis. The seed of the woman is and across the head of the service. I think that's one of the things that we get from those genealogies depends on on which one that were looking at any think of the one in the early chapters of the Gospels related to Jesus.

I think one of the beautiful things about those genealogies is you get to see all of the different people in Jesus's background, his family tree. For example, you have some pretty interesting colorful characters in that family tree yet. It's that tree from where the Messiah came, as I think there are different things that we can pull from these genealogies, but I don't know that I want to say more than that. So thanks for your question.

This is core Christianity with pastor Israel Sanchez and with the Christmas season upon us were really excited to share a brand-new offer with you today. That's right, Bill. You know the holidays are filled with a lot of fun festivities is often the case that the hustle and bustle of the season drowns out what is most important about Christmas that is Jesus. God is come to be with us and that's why I'm excited to share Jesus Christ, the promised Messiah. If the daily devotional that shows you what Christmas is really all about each day of December, highlights prophecies about Jesus in the Old Testament, and then it shows you where those prophecies are fulfilled in Jesus in the New Testament. Their hope is that as you come to Jesus through the pages.

The Bible you and your loved ones will experience the life-giving presence of Christ this Christmas season is devotional is free when you sign up for our weekly newsletter. So head over to core Christianity.com/Christmas. To download this resource. This is really beautiful and something you could go through with your family as well.

Here's the phone number to call if you'd like to take advantage of this offer or any one of our offers its 833-843-2673 that numbers 833, the court was go to another phone call that came in this one from John in Denver, Colorado.

Question about your ego surgery church tells me that you to repent and be baptized, I believe that's in the word the strongly stress that you must be baptized in eyewitness out on the streets of Denver. I'm a motorcycle on a bike on a car and you should be by your trailer and Terry of Kabul Warwick maybe codes are very convincing that you must be in that you're not.

They question your celebration and now I'm questioning making sure that right there) course like anyone else.

All glory to Scripture on how Paul did the right to review our unit to whoever so what's the real deal here. Let me know. Hey John, thanks to that question, I'm just picturing you on a motorcycle, preaching the gospel with the big baptismal tub behind you and that's a pretty cool image silks look I think today we've really downplayed the importance of things like baptism, we downplayed the importance of things like the Lord's supper, you hear us on this program talking about we call the means of grace. The preaching of God's word baptism, the Lord's supper.

These are the ways that God communicates his grace to us powerfully by the work of the Holy Spirit. Ultimately, it's so important because I think we live in a day where everybody single I want to have asked variants of God's presence. I want to know where I can meet God so people go searching in the mountains or in the desert trying to have any experience with guys mostly were playing Marco Polo with the Holy Spirit. You know, like where are you, God, I'm trying to find you in and you hear about something happening over here in this corner of the world we go there and it is somewhere else we go somewhere else.

That's not how we experience God. God is made so simple that you want to experience my presence my power. My working.

I've attached my promises to my word to these ordinances that I have instituted.

Jesus has instituted baptism, the Lord's supper.

Now those things are very ordinary water, bread and wine preaching and were tempted to despise those thing did not think there that's special we want something that's that's more exciting, more sexy if I can use the word and the fact of the matter is God meets us in these ordinary ways he communicates his grace to us the power of the Holy Spirit you want to experience the presence and power of God of Jesus in your life. Paul says in first Corinthians 10 that we have communion with the body and blood of Jesus in the Lord's supper. Baptism is so important. It sounds to me John like you're talkative. Maybe some people who are part of Church of Christ or something like that that are sink unless your baptized your you're not saved in lesser baptized in this way and they baptized in the name of Christ, then you're in big trouble that we baptized in the name of the father and of the son and of the Holy Spirit as Jesus said in the great commission and we recognize what baptism is baptism. Is this sign this sacrament. This means of grace that really conveys to us exhibits to us in a powerful way the gospel the washing away of our sins is more than just an outward sign of my inward faith that we often hear today in the church.

It's actually God speaking his promises to his people to be a God to you and to your children. I think that's what we can't downplay this we need this invisible word this visible gospel that's given to us now, does that mean that if a person isn't baptized, they have faith in Jesus and then and they get hit by a car all of a sudden and they die in God's as well. Your neck and let you into heaven because you didn't complete the deal by getting baptism that that's not the case at all. Baptism in the end of itself, without faith doesn't save anyone immediate communicates in a vivid object of way, the promise and power of the gospel and yet we lay hold of that promise by faith, baptism, the Lord's supper should lift our eyes up to Jesus the Savior of the world, the one whose blood washes away all of our sins.

And so we don't want to have a view of baptism that makes it the thing that saves us. So it's like I'm putting my trust in my baptism, no new baptism or to put our trust in Jesus, and so I would say throughout preaching the gospel and good for you.

I think that's awesome. Come preach out here in San Diego as you're out preaching the gospel help people get plugged into good churches help them realize that they need to be in a good church and that they need to be baptized. Baptism is a part of disciples is the first part of discipleship going to all the world and make disciples. How baptizing them in the name of the father and of the son and of the Holy Spirit and then teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you. And so Joey, what we don't want to have a superstitious real baptism, but we also want to treat it is as meaningless. We want to preach the gospel to people and encourage them to obey God's word to be baptized to be a part of local churches where they're going to continue to hear the gospel and be built up in their faith. Thanks for your question and for your ministry brother that reminds me a drill of the importance when we are evangelizing. Whether it's during street ministry or any form of evangelism to always encourage someone to get plugged into a solid Bible believing church if we just go through the four spiritual laws with them and then have them make a commitment, but there's no follow-up there's kinda left dangling in the wind. Yeah, you're exactly right and what were united to Jesus by faith, guess what else are united to his body. Jesus is the head of the church. The church is his body. If you're in Christ. If you have a personal relationship with Jesus.

We are also united to the body of Christ brothers and sisters and so would make no sense and I don't speaking this to someone right I am speaking to you and you you say I have a personal relationship with Jesus but I don't go to church. I don't need a church but there's something really wrong.

The individual members of the body are not going to grow and be able to function. If there severed on the side of the road.

Paul says in verse 20 and 12 that we are all members of the body of Christ. You might be a hand or foot or an eye or a nose or something of the but the body is only as healthy as we are together in Christ. Using our gifts for the building up of the body together.

This also in Ephesians chapter 4 and so you can't say I have a personal relationship with Jesus, but I just don't really care about the church. There's something really wrong with that.

There's a malfunction in our understanding of what God is sends out encourage you if you know Jesus, if you love Jesus, you need to be in a solid Bible believing church. She needed to be a blessing to you and that's where Jesus can continue to minister to you and encourage you through his word and do other believers and where your gifts can continue to be cultivated and you can serve the body of Christ for the good of the whole seek it out there listing to core Christianity with pastor Israel Sanchez and if you have a question force. Feel free to call at 833.

The core Maddie posted on Instagram and she says if repentance is necessary for Christians and repentance means to turn from sin, then, does that make repentance a work that is necessary for our salvation.

If so, how does this agree with the claim that were saved by free grace through the body and blood of Christ. How do we know if were truly repentant.

If we continue to commit the same sins. Can someone be truly repentant, but perhaps not even fight against certain sins. Thank you for that question found like you've really been thinking about this is really clear question the way that you've asked it repentance and faith are saving graces were called to repent and believe the gospel in their different ways that people have defined repentance and once as we can think of it as the negative aspect of faith.

So repentance is turning away from my sins and faith is turning toward Jesus and laying hold of him so repentance we do is we essentially miss with the word.

The Greek word Matt Inouye means repentance to change your mind.

The change of mind, it's, I'm, I'm realizing that this thing that I'm doing this life that I'm living is sinful and I'm I'm admitting that I'm confessing that they got him saying God I need your help. I'm turning for my sins. I'm turning to Jesus to lay hold of Jesus. That's repentance and faith. Now we also throughout the entire Christian life are going to continue doing that.

Continue repenting because God is in a reveal to us areas of our lives that still need to be put to death were were still struggling with the flesh and are repentance and our faith this side of heaven.

Maddie are not ever to be perfect. It's not that were saved because our repentance is perfect or our faith is perfect is that were saved because of who our faith clings to Jesus, the perfect one the strong one and so that's the hope that we have as Christians.

Now you you have some other questions you know related to repentance and how can we know if our repentance is true or false actually wrote an article report, Christianity.com called true and false repentance. What's the difference I think that might be helpful for you because there is such a thing is, as false repentance. People just have this sort of remorse that they've been caught. They really don't care about sin and that they've sinned against God or just upset their cotton so they have the sort of external sorrow, but they're not really turning to the Lord were just wallowing and being upset that they've been caught and that that's not repentance. Untrue repentance is a grace that God gives to us whereby we see our sin for what it is and turn to Jesus. We can hold to the reality that were justified by faith alone that were saved not by anything that we do and yet at the same time we know that the entire Christian life. Maddie is one of repentance.

One of repentance and faith were continuing to trust in the Lord to look to him and that doesn't mean that our salvation is contingent upon how how well we continue to do in the Christian life that were already saved but were going through this continued process of sanctification of growing in grace of putting to death those sinful deeds that God continues to bring up, look to Jesus chase after him, setting our eyes on him through the preaching of the gospel through the means of grace that is given to us and resting in the promise that he's given to us as well so you can be truly repented and still struggle with sins. Yes, we can say Lord I know this is a sin turn to him and still an hour later, a day later have those same temptations have that same struggle and you know we do say Lord I confess that you again, have mercy upon me, forgive me, help me, by the grace of your Holy Spirit, sanctify me that's the Christian life cistern. As you cling to Jesus, you can rest in Jesus, knowing that he holds you. God bless you and we drill you mentioned the term godly sorrow and I'm wondering if you could sort of help us differentiate between and this is in second Corinthians godly sorrow versus worldly sorrow because there is a distinct difference yeah and that's exactly that article that I referenced some core, Christianity.com that's really what I try to get into their worldly sorrow doesn't want accountability is unwilling to submit to church, accountability to brothers and sisters in the Lord raised we still want to cling to our sins. So don't really want to bring it into the light. We've been caught potentially and were upset that we've been caught and were mad about the consequences of having been caught. We don't really want to part ways from our sin because we don't hate our sin. We don't see it as bad as it really is is I think true repentance recognizes sin for what it is, it will kill me. We have to cut it off depart from it. Now again like I said we don't do that perfectly we just can we have that battle with the flesh, but returned to Jesus and we abomination our sins we say God help me.

That's what repentance does it it's turning to Jesus as its say on that's gonna wallow in sorrow about my said you that's another thing that we need to understand sometimes I think we fail and we think again. I have to go through this process of self-flagellation beating myself up before I feel like I can come into the presence of God. What an odd way.

Think about it were trying to atone for our sins realize that realize that it may be your focus hasn't been the heinousness of your sins and the beauty of your Savior may be your focus is been the fact that you're just upset that you're caught that you want us to hold onto. This will confess even that to the Lord and say, God, help me to have the desire to repent, give me the grace to turn to you turn to your son Jesus and God is merciful. We call upon him recognizing that we've been living a lie embraces us in his son. Thanks for listening to court Christianity to request your copy of today's special offer. Visit us at court, Christianity.com and click on offers in the menu for or call us at 1-833-843-2673 that's a 33, the court when you contact us. Please let us know how you been encouraged by this podcast and be sure to join us next time. As we explore the truth of God's word together


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