From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession
Ambrose also speaks well about repentance: “Therefore it is proper for us to believe that we are to both repent and be pardoned, but to expect pardon through faith, like it would obtain it from a written contract. Again, “It is faith that covers our sins.”
So, there is material in the Fathers, not only about contrition and works, but also concerning faith. But since the adversaries understand neither the nature of repentance nor the language of the Fathers, they select passages concerning only a part of repentance, namely works. Since they do not understand the statements made elsewhere concerning faith, they exclude them.
Pulling It Together
Of what use is repentance, if it is merely being sorry for sins and then doing something good? People will remain in guilt, knowing that they are never good enough to merit forgiveness. That kind of repentance focuses on self and our guilt, not on God and his peace. So, faith must always be joined to confession. We must believe that, for Christ’s sake, we are forgiven all of our sins, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Strictly speaking, good works should not be considered in repentance; for good works come after repentance. We must believe the words of absolution before we can do good works. Once we have believed in the promise, or had faith in Christ, repentance is finished. Now is the time for good works—because God desires them, not because they are required for forgiveness.
In summary, repentance consists of these two parts. One, we must acknowledge through confession that we have sinned. Two, we must then have faith that the Father forgives us because of his Son.
Prayer: Help me to faithfully serve you, Lord, because I do not need to worry about your love and forgiveness. Amen.
Receive these daily Sola Devotions by email. Write firstname.lastname@example.org with "Subscribe" as your subject. To unsubscribe, send an email to the same address with "Unsubscribe" as your subject.
This five session VBS series features one of the most famous people in Scripture. The Books of 1 and 2 Samuel tell the story of a young Israelite shepherd named David, who was chosen by God to be king. The biblical story shows how God can work through an ordinary person to do great things, illustrating the themes of faith, courage, compassion, and leadership.
David: Hero of God, is one of five books in Sola's Versatile Budget Series. The VBS Series is a simple and flexible Vacation Bible School curriculum designed especially for small churches, house churches, and mission congregations. The flexible format works well for groups with limited budgets, or in situations where the ages and number of students may vary from session to session. Unlike more elaborate and expensive VBS kits, these books are meant to serve as an “all-in-one” teacher’s resource. The worksheets and handouts they contain can be reproduced according to local needs. Each book in the Versatile Budget Series focuses on a particular character from the Bible, bringing together several stories on a common theme. Resources and ideas are provided for gathering time, music, activities, games, and refreshments — allowing just a few adult leaders to host a week of Vacation Bible School.
The price of the book includes permission to reproduce the worksheets and handouts for local use. For smaller churches in a "one-room schoolhouse" setting, only one book is necessary. For churches with multiple grade levels and individual classes, we suggest that each teacher have a copy of the curriculum book.