In Romania there is a word pocăit. Roughly translated, it means “repenter.” It was a derogatory label given to evangelical believers in the last century. There were cultural “Christians,” and then there were pocăiții – “repenters” who believed an ongoing life of repentance was essential to the Christian life. The nick-name, repenter, set them apart from those who called themselves Christians but did not demonstrate any repentance in their lives. People who grew up in the church, called themselves Christians, but had never truly repented, who are not truly saved. The same is sadly true today.
Jesus said, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven” (Matt 7:21).
This morning we will consider last two marks of genuine conversion so that you may know who you are. In particular we are going to put true, biblical repentance under the spotlight – so that you can determine whether or not you have truly repented unto eternal life.
How is your love for Christ? If you are honest then it waxes and wanes according to your moods. Think of the love you had for your Saviour when you were saved. How is that love for Christ now? It is all too easy to love the world and the things of the world – to have a growing affection for our possessions or our achievements, our family, or even our ministry, and to grow out of love for Jesus – the One who is all-together lovely.
In looking at this passage we see three aspects of love for Christ which, I hope, will make us examine our love for Christ, will make us want to love Christ more, and will give us the means by which we can pursue love for Christ.