Notice that this plan places faith before repentance.
To those in the Churches of Christ, this is “common sense” because it is believed that ‘one must believe before he can repent.’ This view arises from their understanding of both “faith” and “repentance.”
“Faith” in the Churches of Christ is understood as nothing more than ‘intellectual assent” or accepting the facts of the Christian faith. To them it is believing God’s historical testimony about Himself, Jesus Christ, and that of the rest of the Bible.
Repentance on the other hand is understood as moral “self-reformation.”
In regards to faith, those in the Churches of Christ often fail to understand that there is a deeper, more substantive aspect of faith which is believing on Jesus Christ for eternal life, and most cannot distinguish between mere intellectual belief or assent from a personal faith that is trusting in Jesus Christ alone for salvation.
Here, they will cite that “even the devils believe” (from James 2:19) in their sermons and will contend that even the “faith of devils” is the same as any other faith except that the faith of devils lacks any moral or religious good works.
Thus, their understanding gives rise to their reversal of the scriptural order of repentance and faith, and yet as we will find, there is not a single scripture in the New Testament to support their view.
To the contrary, when we consider this in light of Scripture, we find repentance actually preceding Faith:
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