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Discovery Magazine 12/1/2012

Change Your Mind

by  AP Staff

Before you can become a Christian,you must repent of your sins. The word “repent” means to change your mind. You must change your mind about your past bad actions and thoughts. Many times in the Bible, people were told to repent. Noah told the people of his day to repent if they did not want to drown in the Flood (2 Peter 2:5). Jonah told the people of Nineveh to repent if they did not want their city to be overthrown (Jonah 3:4; Matthew 12:41). John the Baptizer told the Jews of Judea to repent and to prepare for the coming Christ and His kingdom (Matthew 3:2; Mark 1:2-4). Jesus also urged people to repent. On the day the church of Christ was established, Peter told thousands of people to repent (Acts 2:38). He later told many others to do the same. In Acts 17, Paul said the people of Athens needed to repent. In the book of Revelation, John told the Christians in the church at Laodicea to repent. These and many other verses show that it is very important to God that we repent of our sins.

When we do something wrong, we should be sad and sorry for that sin. But just being sorry is not enough. We must also repent. Paul said that “godly sorrow produces repentance to salvation” (2 Corinthians 7:10). That means that our sorrow will lead us to decide not to repeat the mistake. And then we will do what we can to correct our mistake. If we truly repent, we will try to undo the wrong we have done. For example, if we stole a toy from another person, to truly repent would mean that we would return the toy to the owner. If we disobeyed our parents, to repent would mean that we would tell them we are sorry, that we will try to do better, and then obey them.

To become a Christian, a person must repent of sin before he or she can be forgiven of those sins by the blood of Jesus.  In fact, Jesus said if we do not repent, we will perish (Luke 13:3,5).

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