The Truth about Biblical Repentance
A compilation of scriptures by Pastor Don McQuinn
First Some Definitions
1. metanoeo NT:3340, lit., “to perceive afterwards” (meta, “after,” implying “change,” noeo, “to perceive”; nous, “the mind, the seat of moral reflection”), in contrast to pronoeo, “to perceive beforehand,” hence signifies “to change one’s mind or purpose,” always, in the NT, involving a change for the better, an amendment, and always, except in Luke 17:3,4, of “repentance” from sin.
metanoia NT:3341, “afterthought, change of mind, repentance,” corresponds in meaning to A, No. 1, and is used of “repentance” from sin or evil…
Note: In the NT the subject chiefly has reference to “repentance” from sin, and this change of mind involves both a turning from sin and a turning to God.
hamartolos NT:268, lit., “one who misses the mark” (a meaning not to be pressed), is an adjective, most frequently used as a noun (see SINFUL); it is the most usual term to describe the fallen condition of men; it is applicable to all men, Rom 5:8,19.
asebeu NT:763, “impiety, ungodliness,” is used of (a) general impiety, Rom 1:18; 11:26; 2 Tim 2:16; Titus 2:12; (b) “ungodly” deeds, Jude 15, RV, “works of ungodliness”; (c) of lusts or desires after evil things, Jude 18. It is the opposite of eusebeia, “godliness.”
Note: Anomia is disregard for, or defiance of, God’s laws; asebeia is the same attitude towards God’s Person.
asebes NT:765, “impious, ungodly” (akin to A), “without reverence for God,” not merely irreligious, but acting in contravention of God’s demands, Rom 4:5; 5:6; 1 Tim 1:9; 1 Peter 4:18; 2 Peter 2:5 v. 6 in some mss.; 3:7; 1:4,15 (twice).
asebeo NT:764, akin to A and B, signifies (a) “to be or live ungodly,” 2 Peter 2:6; (b) “to commit ungodly deeds,” Jude 15.
(from Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words, Copyright (c)1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers)
John the Baptist Preached It
3 And he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins;
4 As it is written in the book of the words of Esaias the prophet, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
5 Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways shall be made smooth;
6 And all flesh shall see the salvation of God.
7 Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
8 Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
9 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
10 And the people asked him, saying, What shall we do then?
11 He answereth and saith unto them, He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath meat, let him do likewise.
12 Then came also publicans to be baptized, and said unto him, Master, what shall we do?
13 And he said unto them, Exact no more than that which is appointed you.
14 And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages.
– John preached his baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.
– Bring forth fruits or show evidence.
– Descriptions of repentance.
– See Acts 19:4
As Preached by Jesus Christ
17 From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
– Jesus preached repentance.
– Why repent? Repentance was preparation for something else.
15 And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.
– Jesus preached repent and believe the gospel.
17 When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
– Jesus came to call sinners to repentance! (of the house of Israel)
3 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.
7 I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.
30 And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.
3 Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him.
4 And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him.
47 And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
– Part of the Great Commission!
As preached by the Apostles
12 And they went out, and preached that men should repent.
– The disciples preached repentance when sent out by Jesus.
38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
– Repentance, baptism and receiving the Holy Ghost = Death, Burial and Resurrection.
19 Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;
– Repentance prepares us for cleansing.
– Repentance prepares us for Baptism!
31 Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.
22 Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.
– Even our thoughts need repented of!
18 When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.
30 And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:
4 Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.
21 Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.
20 But shewed first unto them of Damascus, and at Jerusalem, and throughout all the coasts of Judaea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance.
4 Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the
goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?
– We are compelled by God’s goodness to repent!
2 Corinthians 7:9-10
9 Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing.
10 For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.
2 Timothy 2:25
25 In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;
– We may need to repent of not acknowledging the truth!
1 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,
– Repentance referred to as a foundation.
6 If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.
17 For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears.
2 Peter 3:9
9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
In the Book of Revelation
5 Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent..
16 Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth.
21 And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not.
– We are free will moral agents; we can decide not to repent.
– God gives windows of opportunity!
22 Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds.
– Consequence for not repenting.
– Spiritual adultery can be repented of.
3 Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.
2 Chron 7:14
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
6 Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Repent, and turn yourselves from your idols; and turn away your faces from all your abominations.
– An element of shame!
30 Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord GOD. Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin.
31 Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel?
32 For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye.
– The admonishment in the Bible is to repent, turn from transgressions and to make a new heart and spirit.
Repentance and Baptism go Hand in Hand
We cannot be saved at repentance alone; it merely qualifies us for Baptism!
Be sure to check out our other topical truth papers in this series:
1) The truth about Apostolic Authority.
2) The truth about the Apostles Gospel
4) The truth about Jesus name Baptism.
5) The truth about the Baptism of the Holy Ghost.
Rev. D. L. McQuinn Memorial Foundation
P.O. Box 178 Outlook, Saskatchewan
Admin: L. McQuinn
Ph: 306 867-9193