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The Necessity of Repentance

"I tell you, Nay: but except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish." - Luke 13:5

In "The Necessity of Repentance," Thomas Boston masterfully navigates the intricate relationship between faith and repentance, asserting that faith is not only the precursor but also the primary motivator for genuine repentance. Drawing from Luke 13:5, Boston underscores the profound spiritual importance of repentance in the Christian life, emphasizing that without faith, symbolized as the "spring and source of repentance," and the "leading grace," true repentance is unattainable. Boston delves into scriptural analysis to support his argument that faith precedes and generates repentance, allowing for a turning away from sin towards God that is both meaningful and transformative.

Boston's work is deeply rooted in Scripture and theological precision, offering insights that are profound, practical, and pastorally sensitive. He corrects common misunderstandings about the nature of divine providence and the urgent need for repentance, highlighting the dire consequences of remaining unrepentant and the hopeful promise of salvation through sincere repentance. Boston's exploration is not confined to a mere doctrinal exposition; it extends to addressing objections, clarifying misconceptions, and providing a comprehensive understanding of repentance's role in salvation, inseparably linked to faith.

This book serves as a valuable resource for theologians, pastors, seminary students, and lay Christians, offering a rich theological grounding, a thorough scriptural analysis, and a devotional quality that encourages self-reflection and spiritual growth. Boston's historical context and theological debates enrich the reader's appreciation for the development of Christian doctrine, making "The Necessity of Repentance" a seminal work that emphasizes repentance as a fruit of faith, fundamental to the Christian life and indispensable for salvation.


Year of release
Table of contents

The Necessity of Repentance

Observation 1: Those who meet with more strokes than others are not to be accounted greater sinners than others Observation 2: That the strokes which any meet with, are pledges of ruin to impenitent sinners.

Observation. 3. The strokes that others meet with, are loud calls to to us to repent

DOCTRINE. Sinners, except they repent, shall perish.

OBJECTION. Repentance is placed before faith

QUESTION. How are we to act faith in order to repentance? 

There are four things occasion shame, and meet here. 

Five things that stir up this self-loathing

The returning of the soul unto God from sin

Turning from sin has these properties. 


Motives to Repentance 

The Danger of Delaying Repentance

The Case of the Thief on the Cross No Argument for Delaying Repentance