• Does repentance require confession? Question and Answer

    Repentance certainly requires confession. It is not simply a resolve to change and behave differently in the future from what I do today. I don’t believe that I need to confess every sin I’ve ever committed to everybody in the world or to all the people in my family. Ultimately, my sin is against God, and what repentance always requires is confession of our sin before God and confession accompanied by contrition—real remorse. I know that I have never approached the full measure of remorse and contrition for my sins that I should have. I believe it was Thomas à … View Resource

  • Since we’re justified by faith alone, how should we understand Jesus’ words in Luke 9:23–24? Question and Answer

    Luke 9:23-24

    Luke 9:23–24 is an important part of our understanding of what true saving faith is. There is self-denial in true saving faith. You are submitting to the lordship of Christ at the point of conversion. That is, you are no longer relying upon yourself through self-righteousness, or your own good works, to commend you to God. This idea from Luke 9 also appears in Matthew 16 and is repeated in Luke 14:26, which says, “Except a man hate his own father and mother and brother and sister, yes, even his own life, he cannot be My disciple.” I think it … View Resource

  • What is the fruit of repentance? Question and Answer

    The fruit of repentance is a changed life. It is a turning away from something and a turning to something. It’s a change—a change of direction; a change of desire. It’s a turning away from a life pursuit of sin, self-righteousness, and self-centeredness, and a turning to the Lord with a new mind, a new heart, and a new will. Saving faith is then the entrusting of your life and your soul to the Lord Jesus Christ—but you must be turned in order to believe. So, the fruit of regeneration is really a lifelong turning away from sin and turning … View Resource

  • Do we add works to the gospel when we call nonbelievers to repent? Question and Answer

    Mark 1:14-15

    We are saved by grace through faith, and it is not our doing. Ephesians 2:8–9 makes that clear. But the call of the gospel, particularly from the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ, is a call to repentance and belief (Mark 1:14–15). It is what the earlier question addressed—the good news is also bad news at the same time. So, repentance is the acknowledgment of my guilt before God; it is the confession and the relinquishing of my sin. And salvation is my receiving of His grace through the finished work of Jesus Christ. This transcript … View Resource

  • Are faith and belief the same thing? Question and Answer

    We use the terms basically interchangeably, but belief can also be used simply to talk about making an intellectual assertion of a particular proposition. For example, “I believe that George Washington was the first president of the United States.” Faith goes beyond that where it involves personal trust in the truth of the Word of God. This transcript is from an Ask R.C. Live event with R.C. Sproul and has been lightly edited for readability. To ask Ligonier a biblical or theological question, just visit Ask.Ligonier.org … View Resource

  • What is the best way to describe repentance to an unbeliever? Question and Answer

    Luke 15:11-32

    The best way may be to use an illustration that you think of either from their life or from your own life. The Hebrew word for repentance means returning. The prodigal son is a story like that: he goes away from home, and he returns home (Luke 15:11-32). I’ve sometimes used this illustration: one night when we were in Glasgow I was driving down the freeway on my way to church, and going up the other direction I noticed the car of one of my elders. I knew it was his car because it was the only elder who had … View Resource

  • Is it okay if I don’t remember the moment I was converted? Question and Answer

    Well, let me ask the question: When was Samuel converted? When was John the Baptist converted? In all likelihood, it was in their mother’s womb. I have a testimony, and I can tell you I was converted on December 28, 1971, at 11:30. I was eighteen years old. My wife, who’s sitting down here has a really boring testimony in that she never remembers a single moment when she didn’t believe. But it is not whether we can remember it, it is whether we are trusting in Jesus Christ right now that matters. Lightly edited for readability, this … View Resource

  • Can you repent at the moment of death and still have the same salvation as someone who’s been a Christian for many years? Question and Answer

    Luke 23:42-43

    That’s a tricky question, but I think it’s a fascinating one and certainly one that many people are concerned about. We talk about foxhole faith, when people cry out in desperate moments of crisis or postpone to their deathbed the moment of committing their lives to Christ. Some people say that it doesn’t make sense for somebody who has been a Christian all their life to be in the same state as somebody who did as they pleased all their life and waited until the last second to get their accounts square with God. There’s a parable in the New … View Resource