What is “Godly Sorrow”?

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‎2 Corinthians 7:10 For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of:but the sorrow of the world worketh death. 

Dear friends, many people use this verse to argue that there must be regret and sorrow in your repentance in order for you to have salvation. It doesn’t. Look at the verse itself. There are 2 kinds of sorrow. The latter speaks about regret and it leads to death. 

The context in which this verse in written is towards Christians who already have salvation. Hence the word ‘salvation’ here means “wholeness” and not ‘being saved’. 

See: 2Co 7:8-10
8 For though I made you sorry with a letter, I do not repent, though I did repent:for I perceive that the same epistle hath made you sorry, though it were but for a season. 9 Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance:for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing. 10 For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of:but the sorrow of the world worketh death.
(KJV)

Look at the context in which Paul uses the word repent here. Paul says he does repent and then he says he repents. Does that sound like regret or repentance from sins? It is more like he changed his mind. That is true repentance. Changing your mind.

What Paul is saying here is this: We must change our attitude towards the way we live. The Corinthians were living a sinful lifestyle. Paul in 1st Cor 6 tells them that despite what they have done, they are purified.

11 And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

This is how you should feel sorry. God is good despite you being a jerk. It is the goodness of God that leads you to true repentance. A total change of attitude.

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