In Scripture, there are a few cases on Repentance quoted, and often in some detail, King David’s one after Nathan the Prophet turned the bright light onto his dirty dark secret actions, as recorded in Psalm 51. The Disciple Peter was so sure of himself, that he could take on anything and beat it without even trying, and then a puzzled young waitress asked him a very simple question, and Peter crashed into the worst and most public of failures, in essence, right in-front of the TV Cameras and aired on an immediate “News Flash,” of the day. Most embarrassing, so much so that he ran off back into the Garden of Gethsemane, all alone with his sorrow, Cock Crows still ringing very loudly in his ears, Jesus look of disappointment, he fell upon the very stone that Jesus had so recently been praying and agonizing upon, broken hearted, his sincere repentance won him a victory.
We all read about Jesus sweating great drops of blood, but who actually noted it down? The mob arrived with torches and weapons, this aroused the Disciples from their deep sleep, a quick confrontation, and they all sleepily scattered, confused as they all fled, they all disappeared in an instance, so who wrote about it? I honestly feel that it was Peter. He repented upon that very rock, agonized and prayed his heart out, then peace flowed in and he received forgiveness and assurance, much later he stood up to dust himself off, and his elbows, sleeves, his chest area were splotched with blood, Jesus blood, Peter was “Covered by the Blood of the Lamb,” and that is literally as well.
“Breakfast on the Beach,” and Peter’s Three Denials were cancelled out by his Three Affirmations, and then his Three Commissions from his Lord and Master Jesus Christ; now this reinstated Peter back as a Disciple and made Peter unstoppable, his path forwards was set out clearly, with his Faith Unbreakable, and his 1st and 2nd Peter gives us a great insight as to what was now directing his steps, and he was unwavering and unstoppable, even on to a Martyrs Death, nothing could shake his unshakeable Faith in his Saviour, Jesus Christ.
Esau is another who was not as careful as he should have been as a young man, and like Peter he tripped up big time, but Esau never could quite come back to full repentance and restoration, though he sought it with many tears. Hebrews 2:16 “Lest there [be] any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright. For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears.” How often we fall into this situation, “for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with many tears.” Are our tears of repentance, or all sorrow that we actually got “Caught” or are they like Peter, tears of genuine repentance that they actually “Let the side down” but worse still, he let “Jesus Down” right at the point that he so desperately wanted a “Prayer Buddy” Matthew 26:40 “And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour?” The “Cares of this life” and “Human Frailty” crushed the Power of the Holy Spirit that should have been controlling and strengthening the life, Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” for sin and failings will always bring us up well short of the goal and the prize, but this is the report on the victorious Repentant ones, Romans 3:24 “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:” Repentant, Victorious, Overcomers, reinstated back into the Family of God.
We can be a “Peter” and have genuine repentance that is “Reformative and Restorative” and we are back on the “Straight and Narrow” or we can be an “Esau” and our repentance is just selfish in that we want to be back in our secret sins, back as things were, but just sorrowing for being caught out. Mary Magdalene had deep sorrow for being “Caught Out” when dumped before Jesus in the Temple Courtyard, was very sorrowful for her being exposed very publicly, caught in the very act, but when it dawned upon her that there were no accusers to condemn her, and even Jesus freely forgave her, her repentance became very genuine, as after this record, there appears no further failings, just from victory to victory. Mary was the first to see Jesus, first to announce the resurrection, though everyone thought that her deep sorrow had confused her, her unshakeable Faith and Assurance lifted her above her surroundings, and she could with conviction say, Job 19:25a “For I know [that] my redeemer liveth,” as her repentance, was genuine, and Jesus had clearly spoken her forgiveness and restoration to her, even when she was, “And you [hath he quickened], who were dead in trespasses and sins:” Ephesians 2:1.
What do you and I need to “Repent over?” What things need to be dug up by the roots and removed forever? What things do we need to install in our lives? Jesus came to a “Fig Tree” and it was all “outward adornment and show” but there was no fruit on them, 2 Timothy 3:5 “Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” It is so easy to have a “Form of Godliness” to repent with much show and tears, but like Esau, there was no broken heart and a changed pathway into righteousness. Let us be a “Mary Magdalene” or a “Peter” and to be genuine and true, and to always when repenting, to turn away from sin, and cease to go that way anymore, for “I once was lost but now I’m found, was blind but now I see,” forever changed by “Genuine Repentance.”