Prove by the way you live that you have repented of your sins and turned to God.
We are saved by God’s grace, not by earning any kind of brownie points (Ephesians 2:8). We are totally dependent upon God’s grace since there is no other option for those who want to be forgiven of their sins and have eternal life. No works by us are involved in that process except for the sense to accept God’s wonderful gift!
And sincere repentance is evident by what a forgiven person does.
Yesterday, our little son got in trouble for getting mad at his brother over a video game and then slamming a door. Not behavior I wish to promote, so I reminded him that we don’t do that and if he did it again he would not only be done with that game but ALL the games. My son repented. Do you know how I know? His behavior changed. Believe me, if his behavior hadn’t changed he would have received the punishment I offered, but he chose repentance instead.
The world will only know we are Christians by what we do. So what makes us think God is a sucker and will believe what we tell him and tell others while our lifestyle completely contradicts a repentant heart? Repentant people change their behavior.
Prove by the way you live that you have repented is how John the Baptist put it. He was talking to important religious leaders when he said it too!
My obedience and my behavior certainly isn’t what saves me, but it surely is an indicator that my relationship with God is not casual but sincere and that I truly have accepted the forgiveness he offers through his wonderful Son!
Believers shouldn’t keep little pet sins like tell little white lies, cheat, belittle, gossip, threaten, or carouse. These are not behaviors that reflect a repentant heart.
I pray that the things I do and say would be pleasing to you. I want to obey you out of a thankful heart. I want to prove that I belong to you by the way that I live. I thank you that my behavior doesn’t save me but because YOU saved me you can help me behave! I love you and thank you and appreciate all you’ve done for me, and I pray in your Son’s name. Amen.