What False Repentance Looks Like

False repentance

As the tree is known by its fruit, so also is repentance. A sign of false repentance is when repentance takes place involuntarily, out of necessity, without pain and grief of heart, without contrition and feeling, without sighing and tears. Such repentance was shown by Pharaoh, who repented at every plague which came to him, but as soon as the plague passed away remained unrepentant. Such false repentance was shown by the Jews, who repented and remembered God in disasters and misfortunes. Yet as soon as the disasters passed away, they would forget God. Most people today also have such repentance: when they come into danger or disaster they repent and seek forgiveness, but as soon as the danger passes away the repentance goes away also. Such repentance is of no avail.

Paternal Counsels, select letters and excerpts from the book: Paternal Counsels Volume I, by Elder Philotheos Zervakos.Elder Philotheos was the spiritual son of Saint Nectarios of Aegina

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