Do you think repentance means we simply stop sinning?

Do you think repentance means we simply stop sinning?

Repentance does not mean to simply stop sinning. Instead, it involves the grace-enabled act of turning to the sole Person with the capacity to empower an individual to overcome sin—namely, Christ. Being a Christian is not a self-salvation project, but rather an appeal to the divine grace of God in Jesus Christ as the sole hope for redemption. Bereft of this divine intervention, human beings would remain perpetually incapable of change, irrespective of therapeutic interventions or the exertion of willpower. Prior to Christ's opening of the heart to the gospel, every individual remains ensnared in inescapable bondage. The necessity of Christ's intervention underscores the futility of attempting self-salvation. Part of the problem is that people are still stuck on trying, at least partly, to save themselves. As articulated in Luke 18:27, what is impossible for humanity—faith and repentance—is possible with God.

Here is an analogy that helps us further understand the nature of repentance:

Jesus said to them, "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners."

Just as you don't need a doctor unless you are sick, similarly, you don't need a Savior unless you are a sinner. Christ's mission is to save those who recognize themselves as sinners in need of redemption. By nature, humans are inclined toward pride, resisting the admission of their status as rebellious sinners who require rescue. In the context of the aforementioned quotation, the Pharisees interrogate Jesus about his association with tax collectors and sinners, believing themselves to be more righteous. However, this self-righteousness ultimately exposes them as individuals who fail to recognize their own sinfulness and need for grace. Instead, they remain trapped in a cycle of pride, erroneously believing that they merit God's favor.

Thus, the call to repentance commences with the acknowledgment of one's entrapment in sin, the recognition of one's incapacity to escape its grasp, and the appeal to Christ as the sole means of deliverance from both the guilt and power of sin. In this way, repentance transcends the mere cessation of sinful actions (an impossible supposition) and encompasses a profound, grace-facilitated transformation in the individual's relationship with God, enabled by Jesus Christ.