A Challenge For Christians – Find 1 Bible Verse Where CHRISTIANS are Told To Repent
Repent! It’s being taught in sermons, Sunday schools, and by religious people, and while it may sound ominous, there’s just one problem. It’s not in the bible.
DISCLOSURE: Yes, Christians absolutely should repent (turn) from sin. We’re not made for it and we certainly are not encouraging it. We’ve died to sin and are only fulfilled when we walk in the spirit. So by all means, let’s live out our identity and live upright godly lives. This post is certainly not suggesting sin is good, or okay.
With the aforementioned disclosure, after the new covenant was established there was not a single verse where ‘Christians’ are told to repent. I find it interesting that preachers can barely give a sermon without calling all the believers to repent, yet God didn’t seem to think it was necessary to be His core teaching.
Why isn’t it a core focus? Because the goal is not to see how awesome we can be at avoiding sin. The goal is to get to know Jesus as we fix our eyes on Him. The author and perfecter of our faith. The Bible does call us to live upright godly lives, but surprisingly Christians are never referred to as having ‘wicked hearts’ in desperate need of repentance. In fact, we aren’t even called sinners. The Corinthians broke world records for sin and they were actually called Saints.
I know, this ‘just Jesus’ message offends the religious ego, but the fact remains these verses of Christian condemnation simply do not exist in the bible. Am I saying God condones sin? Of course not – that would be stupid of me. God hates sin, but the newsflash is, if you are a Christian, then Jesus FULLY paid for your sin and made you right with God. Through His blood, not your performance. That’s right, God took care of sin, which once separated us from Him. Though we all stumble in many ways, God has chosen to remember our sins no more, and thanks to the blood of Christ when we are faithless He remains faithful, as we have His Spirit in us, and He cannot disown Himself.
If repenting were the goal and God thought it was most of the utmost importance then scripture would be littered with these kinds of verses. Instead, the post-cross messages are all about grace and forgiveness, apart from works, apart from the law.
So, my challenge is being made to anyone who can’t seem to talk about Jesus, grace, kindness, and forgiveness, unless they crush the audience with a ‘you better repent, or else’ message. I challenge you to find just one verse where Christians are told to repent. I want you to find one verse that is indisputable as to who it’s written to (believer or non-believer). And, since you likely would be the one who can’t talk about Jesus without talking about repenting in every other sentence then you should be able to list a few of those verses (because clearly, you must think that’s the primary message in scripture).
Though you will struggle to find any verses, let me address Revelation 3:19, the most common verse that some may throw our way.
What you will find in the new testament is that the word ‘repent’ usually refers to a change of mind. Specifically changing your mind from looking to the law for righteousness, and instead of looking to Jesus. We call it the Gospel! The greatest message on planet earth.
Author: Mike Cynar
Mike Cynar was raised in a church setting where he frequently noticed that many attendees would eventually drift away. The church labeled these individuals as ‘back sliders’ or ‘fake Christians’ just looking for ‘fire insurance’. However, Mike realized the issue was rarely with these individuals but instead with the church’s message itself. The teachings heavily emphasized behavior improvement and one’s flaws, with only a fleeting mention of one’s identity in Christ. It felt as though every sermon was tailored to the church of Corinth, who as we know or committing sins that even unbelievers don’t partake in. This trend was noticeable not just in one denomination, but across Baptist, Catholic, Pentecostal, and many other churches. Upon understanding the true essence of the gospel – that our righteousness comes from Jesus’ actions, not our own – Mike was inspired to liberate believers from lifeless sermons and reconnect them with the genuine teachings of Jesus. He believes that one can nurture a vibrant and growing bond with Jesus, unhindered by rigid religious practices. And thus, “Jesus Without Religion” was born.
It turns out that it is grace that leads to repentance. And if our heart is to get others to walk in the Spirit and live a godly life, then the best approach is not a beat down sermon, but rather to remind other that it is only when we understand our true identity in Christ that we will live it out. Yes, it’s true, if you’re convinced that God thinks you’re a dirty sinner, you will ultimately continue a lifestyle that mirrors that view, but if you truly believe that even on your worst day, you are called holy, sanctified, justified, and will be presented blameless in the end, well, it turns out this is the secret to living out on the outside what has been worked in to the inside.