Repentance and Faith = Two Sides of Turning

Categories: Book Reviews

From Repentance: The First Word of the Gospel by Richard Owen Roberts
Quotes from pages 68-70

Some have reasoned that, because a call for faith sometimes appears in the New Testament without any mention of repentance, it is faith alone that is necessary for salvation. But...there are occasional Scriptures in which repentance is demanded with no mention of faith. Are we about to insist, then, that it is repentance alone that is necessary for salvation? Certainly not. But the argumentative persons may want us to note that there are more mentions of faith and belief without repentance than there are of repentance without faith and belief. Does that then suggest that biblical issues are settled by majority vote? How absurd!

Others have wondered which comes first--is repentance followed by faith, or is faith followed by repentance? Both positions have their advocates. This is really a needless controversy because repentance and faith are wed together, never to be divorced. True repentance does not stand alone but is always linked with true faith. True faith does not stand alone but is always linked with true repentance.

It is necessary to turn from in order to turn to. Repentance and faith are different sides of the same turning. Neither repentance nor faith are meritorious: repentance is the fulfillment of a negative duty, faith is the fulfillment of positive duty; the merit is in Jesus Christ and His death, burial, and resurrection.

"John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in Him who was coming after him, that is, in Jesus." (Acts 19:4)

Paul was "solemnly testifying to both Jews and Greeks of repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ." (Acts 20:21)

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