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As our faith in Christ grows, we will feel the need to repent of our sins. To repent, we must feel sincere sorrow that we have sinned and ask God to forgive us. We must do all that we can do to correct any harm that we have done. We should also experience "a change of heart." This means that we lose all desire for the sin, turn away from it, and do it no more. Throughout our lives we will need to continue the process of repentance whenever we fall short of the perfect example of Jesus.
Repentance is essential to salvation:
Acts 17:30 "And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:"
2 Nephi 9:23 "And he commandeth all men that they must repent, and be baptized in his name, having perfect faith in the Holy One of Israel, or they cannot be saved in the kingdom of God."
We must feel sorrow, not because we will suffer the consequences for our sins, but because we have disobeyed our Father and hurt others:
2 Corinthians 7:9-10 " Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing. For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death."
Alma 42:29 " And now, my son, I desire that ye should let these things trouble you no more, and only let your sins trouble you, with that trouble which shall bring you down unto repentance."
Mormon 2:13-14 " But behold this my joy was vain, for their sorrowing was not unto repentance, because of the goodness of God; but it was rather the sorrowing of the damned, because the Lord would not always suffer them to take happiness in sin. And they did not come unto Jesus with broken hearts and contrite spirits, but they did curse God, and wish to die. Nevertheless they would struggle with the sword for their lives."
When we repent, we experience a "change of heart," and our behavior changes:
Acts 26:20 " But shewed first unto them of Damascus, and at Jerusalem, and throughout all the coasts of Judaea, and [then] to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance."
2 Corinthians 5:17 "Therefore if any man [be] in Christ, [he is] a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."
Ephesians 4:22-24 "That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness."
Mosiah 5:2 "And they all cried with one voice, saying: Yea, we believe all the words which thou hast spoken unto us; and also, we know of their surety and truth, because of the Spirit of the Lord Omnipotent, which has wrought a mighty change in us, or in our hearts, that we have no more disposition to do evil, but to do good continually."
Copyright 1986 by Corporation of the President of THE CHURCH of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-day Saints.
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