What are the Causes of Repentance?
The causes of repentance are not opinions but the Word of God. Therefore, putting opinions and religious prejudices aside, let’s explore biblically, what are some of the causes of repentance?
Regardless of how we feel about repentance, know for sure that we cannot repent autonomously on our own.
Repentance is intricately tied up with sins and forgiveness. Therefore, in dissecting the causes of repentance we must examine their relationships and inter-relationships.
One fundamental relationship, is how repentance is inextricably bound up in the Lord God and His Word.
In order for anyone (saint or sinner) to experience repentance such a one must first hear the Word of God.
Consequently, both Apostles Mark and Luke announced:”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” (Mark 2:17 & Luke 5:32).
How the Call to Repent Causes Repentance?
It is this “call” from our Lord Jesus Christ, which motivates us to repent. However, the call is distinct. It emanates from the Word of God and it vociferously says “Repent”. There is no mistaking this call for anything else.
No wonder all the major players in Christianity from John the Baptist to now when making the call to repentance: initiate it with the simple but effective word:”Repent”.
“Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?” (Romans 2:4).
We experience the “goodness of God” via His Word. And this manifest during the preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It’s this Word of God that reveals the goodness of God towards sinful man, and proclaims the call to obey His Word.
Your obedience to this call is one of the causes of repentance.
Of all the Causes of Repentance this one is Unpopular
The “riches of his goodness”; “forbearance”; and “longsuffering” do expose additional causes of repentance.
For example, over the years you have been haughty. The Lord has been “calling” you to repentance. You have heard His Word through preaching time after time. But you have not repented.
Had it not been for those three contributing factors above you wouldn’t have another opportunity to hear the call again.
Nevertheless, even after many years the Lord still suffers long with you and sends His Word to your heart time after time. He is longsuffering. And this feature is one of the causes of repentance.
This next reason for repentance is very unique to each individual. You are the only person that has the ultimate control over this cause of repentance. And this one speaks of the state of your heart.
The Primary Causes of Repentance
The primary causes of repentance flow from the identical place from which lack of repentance stems: The heart.
If your heart (spirit) is tough and unbelieving you will not perceive any reason to repent.
However, if it’s broken and contrite it’s readily repentant. Moreover, the unbelieving heart cannot get near to the Lord God.
But He accepts and will never despise a heart-broken before Him.
All the major causes of repentance flow from the heart. They ebb not from a firm and unbelieving heart but from a meek and quiet spirit.
To conclude, for repentance to occur one must hear the Word of God, which calls the sinner to “Repent”. And it comes by way of hearing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Because of the goodness; forbearance and long-suffering of the Lord many repent and turn to Him.
Have you been postponing repenting over something that’s been gnawing away at your conscience?
What About the Heart Causes Repentance?
Stop! Yield yourself to the Lord Jesus Christ. Your repentance comes from Him. The more Word of God you imbibe and put into your heart the easier it becomes for you to repent before God.
Because this Word of God is sharp and powerful it cuts away all the “hardness” from your heart thus making it easier to accept and believe His Word. Then comes repentance when you need to repent.
But if you have never heard or receive the Word of God repentance is far from you. How can you believe in Him whom you have never heard?