God hates sin—He has made this clear to His children in His Word. And He has equipped us with Scripture and His Spirit so that we can recognize sin in our lives and wage war against it. Yet despite all of this, we can still fall into Satan's traps, leading us to stumble in our pursuit of righteousness. When this happens, how should we respond to our failure so that God is honored and we are able to break free of sin's grasp?
All too often, we simply want to be pardoned from our sin. The thought of repenting is almost foreign to us. To repent means to stop what we are doing and to go in the opposite direction. However, most of the time we want a simple dismissal of our actions and a warning not to commit them again.
True repentance means we love God more than we love our sin.
But true repentance means that we recognize we have sinned and offended the heart of God, and true repentance causes us to come clean and desire wholeness again.
David discovered that grieving God's heart was painful. Therefore, simply saying, "I'm sorry," would not do. He approached God with true humility and brokenness that showed his heart was in the right place. Later, David wrote, "My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise" (Psalm 51:17).
Whenever we come before God with a heart that is contrite—sincerely sorry for what we did wrong and longing to change our ways—God is moved. He sees that we recognize what we did was wrong and that we want to be pure again.
True repentance means we love God more than we love our sin. When we run back to Him as prodigal children, He opens His arms and welcomes us with His unending grace.
Prayer: Lord, instill in me a heart of repentance that returns to You when I realize I have sinned. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
"Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death" (2 Corinthians 7:10).
Learn more in Dr. Michael Youssef's sermon David: Portrait of a Champion, Part 13: LISTEN NOW