“What is the difference between repentance and remorse? The question demands an answer. Not all that weeps is truly broken. Not every promise of reform produces real change. The Scriptures make clear that ‘godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.’ (2 Cor. 7:10). Not all that appears religious in its regret is genuine repentance. It may be nothing more than remorse …

Remorse is sorry for being caught; repentance is grief over the sin. Remorse is distress over the consequences, repentance is broken over rebellion against a holy God. Remorse is temporary and fleeting, but repentance is lasting and life-changing. Remorse is the embarrassed cry of an unbroken soul being caught red-handed, while repentance is the believer’s cry of horror over the darkness of his own soul. Remorse hides self-will under the cloak of contrition. When the spot light is off, self-will crawls out from under the wraps to ascend the throne once again. Real repentance, on the other hand, comes clean, slays self-will and ushers Christ back to His rightful place on the throne of our lives. Real repentance begins in a moment, but becomes an abiding attitude and orientation to life.

Mere remorse is Satan’s tool to torment a bankrupt soul, to deceive that soul into believing it has done business with God. Repentance is God’s gift to liberate a soul that has been undone before His infinite holiness and to usher it into the new life He offers in Christ.” (Praying Through, 139, 149)