The Early Christians Preached Repentance and Faith PROVEN by DEEDS!
Noah preached repentance, and as many obeyed were saved. Jonah proclaimed destruction to the Ninevites; but they, repenting of their sins, made atonement to God by prayer, and obtained salvation, although they were aliens [to the covenant] of God. The ministers of the grace of God have, by the Holy Spirit, spoken of repentance… And in another place He speaks thus: “Wash you, and become clean; put away the wickedness of your souls from before mine eyes; cease from your evil ways, and learn to do well; seek out judgment, deliver the oppressed, judge the fatherless, and see that justice is done to the widow; and come, and let us reason together. He declares, Though your sins be like crimson, I will make them white as snow; though they be like scarlet, I will whiten them like wool. And if you be willing and obey Me, you shall eat the good of the land; but if you refuse, and will not hearken unto Me, the sword shall devour you, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken these things.” Desiring, therefore, that all His beloved should be partakers of repentance, He has, by His almighty will, established [these declarations]. Clement of Rome (A.D. 96) ch.7-8
While we are on earth, then, let us repent: for we are clay under the craftsman's hand. For in like manner as the potter, if he be making a vessel, and it get twisted or crushed in his hands, reshapes it again; but if he have once put it into the fiery oven, he shall no longer mend it: so also let us, while we are in this world, repent with our whole heart of the evil things which we have done in the flesh, that we may be saved by the Lord, while we have yet time for repentance. For after that we have departed out of the world, we can no more make confession there, or repent any more. Second Clement (A.D. 100) ch.8
While we have time to be healed, let us place ourselves in the hands of God the physician, giving Him a recompense. What recompense? Repentance from a sincere heart. Second Clement (A.D. 100) ch.9
Therefore, brethren, let us repent forthwith. Let us be sober unto that which is good: for we are full of much folly and wickedness. Let us wipe away from us our former sins, and let us repent with our whole soul and be saved. And let us not be found men-pleasers. Second Clement (A.D. 100) ch.13
Therefore, brethren, since we have found no small opportunity for repentance, seeing that we have time, let us turn again unto God that called us, while we have still One that receives us. For if we bid farewell to these enjoyments and conquer our soul in refusing to fulfill its evil lusts, we shall be partakers of the mercy of Jesus. Second Clement (A.D. 100) ch.16
I read to you an exhortation to the end that you may give heed to the things which are written, so that you may save both yourselves and him that reads in the midst of you. For I ask of you as a reward that you repent with your whole heart, and give salvation and life to yourselves. Second Clement (A.D. 100) ch.19
Only pray you for them (the Heretics), if haply they may repent. This indeed is difficult, but Jesus Christ, our true life, has power over it. Ignatius: to the Smyrnaeans (A.D. 35-105) ch.4
Yea, and to all the saints that have sinned unto this day, if they repent with their whole heart, and remove double-mindedness from their heart. For the Master swore by His own glory, as concerning His elect; that if, now that this day has been set as a limit, sin shall hereafter be committed, they shall not find salvation; for repentance for the righteous has an end; the days of repentance are accomplished for all the saints; whereas for the Gentiles there is repentance until the last day. Hermas (A.D. 150) ch.11
They then that shall repent, if they repent, will be strong in the faith, if they repent now while the tower is building. But if the building shall be finished, they have no more any place, but shall be castaways. Hermas (A.D. 150) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.1 pg. 14
"To repent is great understanding," said he. "For the man that has sinned understands that he has done evil before the Lord, and the deed which he has done enters into his heart, and he repents, and does no more evil, but does good lavishly, and humbles his own soul and puts it to torture because it sinned. You see then that repentance is great understanding." Hermas (A.D. 150) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.1 pg.22
"But I say unto you," said he, "if after this great and holy calling any one, being tempted of the devil, shall commit sin, he has only one (opportunity of) repentance. But if he sin off-hand and repent, repentance is unprofitable for such a man; for he shall live with difficulty." Hermas (A.D. 150) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.1 pg.22
You then that repent, cast away the evil doings of this world which crush you; and, by putting on every excellence of righteousness, you shall be able to observe these commandments, and to add no more to your sins. If then you add no further sin at all, you will depart from your former sins. Hermas (A.D. 150) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.1 pg. 36
Well, do you think that the sins of those who repent are forgiven immediately? Certainly not; but the person who repents must torture his own soul, and must be thoroughly humble in his every action, and be afflicted with all the divers kinds of affliction; and if he endure the afflictions which come upon him, assuredly He Who created all things and endowed them with power will be moved with compassion and will bestow some remedy. Hermas (A.D. 150) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.1 pg.38
"…the Lord, how great and glorious it is, and He has given (His) Spirit to those that are worthy of repentance." "Wherefore then, Sir," say I, "did they not all repent?" "To those, whose heart He saw about to become pure and to serve Him with all the heart, to them He gave repentance; but those whose craftiness and wickedness He saw, who intend to repent in hypocrisy, to them He gave not repentance, lest haply they should again profane His name." Hermas (A.D. 150) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.1 pg. 41
Go, and tell all men to repent, and they shall live unto God; for the Lord in His compassion sent me to give repentance to all, though some of them, because of their deeds do not deserve to be saved. Hermas (A.D. 150) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.1 pg. 42
"As many," [said he,] "as [shall repent] from their whole heart [and] shall cleanse themselves from all the evil deeds aforementioned, and shall add nothing further to their sins, shall receive healing from the Lord for their former sins, unless they be double-minded concerning these commandments, and they shall live unto God." Hermas (A.D. 150) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.1 pg.42
These are they that have heard my commandments now, and have practiced repentance with their whole heart. So when the Lord saw that their repentance was good and pure, and that they could continue therein, he ordered their former sins to be blotted out. Hermas (A.D. 150) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.1 pg. 54
And the Lord, knowing the heart, and foreknowing the future, foresaw both the fickleness of man and the craft and subtlety of the devil from the first, from the beginning; how that, envying man for the forgiveness of sins, he would present to the servants of God certain causes of sins; skillfully working mischief, that they might fall together with himself. Accordingly, being very merciful, He has vouch-safed, in the case of those who, though in faith, fall into any transgression, a second repentance; so that should any one be tempted after his calling, overcome by force and fraud, he may receive still a repentance not to be repented of. "For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remains no more sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shah devour the adversaries." But continual and successive repentings for sins differ nothing from the case of those who have not believed at all, except only in their consciousness that they do sin. Clement of Alexandria (A.D. 195) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.2 pg.360
"Born again, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh," but in the Spirit; which consists in repenting by not giving way to the same fault. For frequent repentance and readiness to change easily from want of training, is the practice of sin again. The frequent asking of forgiveness, then, for those things in which we often transgress, is the semblance of repentance, not repentance itself. Clement of Alexandria (A.D. 195) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.2 pg.361
Repentance then becomes capable of wiping out every sin, when on the occurrence of the soul's fault it admits no delay, and does not let the impulse pass on to a long space of time. For it is in this way that evil will be unable to leave a trace in us, being plucked away at the moment of its assault like a newly planted plant. Clement of Alexandria (A.D. 195) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.2 pg.580
Forgiveness of past sins, then, God gives; but of future, each one gives to himself. And this is to repent, to condemn the past deeds, and beg oblivion of them from the Father, who only of all is able to undo what is done, by mercy proceeding from Him, and to blot out former sins by the dew of the Spirit. "For by the state in which I find you will I judge," Clement of Alexandria (A.D. 195) Ante-Nicene Fathers vol.2 pg.602
These things, beloved, we write unto you, not merely to admonish you of your duty, but also to remind ourselves. For we are struggling on the same arena, and the same conflict is assigned to both of us. Wherefore let us give up vain and fruitless cares, and approach to the glorious and venerable rule of our holy calling. Let us attend to what is good, pleasing, and acceptable in the sight of Him who formed us. Let us look stedfastly to the blood of Christ, and see how precious that blood is to God,(1) which, having been shed for our salvation, has set the grace of repentance before the whole world. Let us turn to every age that has passed, and learn that, from generation to generation, the Lord has granted a place of repentance to all such as would be converted unto Him. Noah preached repentance, and as many as listened to him were saved.(2) Jonah proclaimed destruction to the Ninevites;(3) but they, repenting of their sins, propitiated God by prayer, and obtained salvation, although they were aliens [to the covenant] of God.
The ministers of the grace of God have, by the Holy Spirit, spoken of repentance; and the Lord of all things has himself declared with an oath regarding it, "As I live, saith the Lord, I desire not the death of the sinner, but rather his repentance ; "(4) adding, moreover, this gracious declaration Repent O house of Israel, of your iniquity.(5) Say to the children of My people, Though your sins reach from earth to heaven, I and though they be redder(6) than scarlet, and blacker than sackcloth, yet if ye turn to Me with your whole heart, and say, Father ! I will listen to you, as to a holy(7) people." And in another place He speaks thus: "Wash you, and become clean; put away the wickedness of your souls from before mine eyes; cease from your evil ways, and learn to do well; seek out judgment, deliver the oppressed, judge the fatherless, and see that justice is done to the widow; and come, and let us reason together. He declares, Though your sins be like crimson, I will make them white as snow; though they be like scarlet, I will whiten them like wool. And if ye be willing and obey Me, ye shall eat the good of the land; but if ye refuse, and will not hearken unto Me, the sword shall devour you, for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken these things."(8) Desiring, therefore, that all His beloved should be partakers of repentance, He has, by His almighty will, established [these declarations].