Repentance Doesn’t Hem and Haw
Paul to the young Timothy:
But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. (1 Timothy 6:11-12)
Several good action words there. Paul is very verby. Flee. Pursue. Fight. Take hold.
The kingdom comes forcefully and forceful men lay hold of it. A mighty Savior brings a mighty salvation, surely not to be mollycoddled.
What does the repentance unto faith look like?
Fleeing. Continually from sin. The jail bars are broken open. Don’t just stand there, make a break for it!
Pursuing. Continually the things of God. They won’t happen by accident. People don’t, as Carson says, “drift into holiness.”
Fighting. Not with fists but with the armor of God against every force of wickedness within and without that would distract or delay you from Christ-fixation.
Taking hold. Of the only source of power for fleeing, pursuing, and fighting — the gospel of Jesus Christ that makes the dead eternally alive. If you would be righteous, godly, faithful, loving, steadfast, and gentle, you must in faith lay hold of Jesus. Put him on, and the qualities that are his are yours.
So this is repentance. No excuses, no yes-buts, no waffling. Not hemming and hawing but an about-face and a cutting to the chase.