John 3:20-21
20 They hate the light because they want to sin in the darkness. They stay away from the light for fear their sins will be exposed and they will be punished. 21 But those who do what is right come to the light gladly, so everyone can see that they are doing what God wants." NLT

11. Only partial reformation of life, also indicates that the heart has not embraced the whole will of God. When there is a disposition manifested to indulge in some sin, no matter how little, it is sure evidence of impenitence of heart. The penitent soul rejects sin as sin; of course every kind or degree of iniquity is put away, loathed, and abhorred. "Whoso keepeth the whole law and yet offend in one point, is guilty of all" (James 2:10), that is, if a man in one point unequivocally sins or disobeys God, it is certain that he truly from the heart obeys Him in nothing. He has not an obedient state of mind. If he really had supreme respect to God's authority, he could not but obey Him in all things. If therefore it be found, that a professor of penitence does not manifest the spirit of universal obedience; if in some things he is manifestly self-indulgent, it may be known that he is altogether yet in sin, and that he is still "in the gall of bitterness and in the bond of iniquity" (Acts 8:23).

James 2:10
10 And the person who keeps all of the laws except one is as guilty as the person who has broken all of God's laws. NLT

Acts 8:23
23 for I can see that you are full of bitterness and held captive by sin." NLT

12. Neglect or refusal to confess and make restitution, so far as opportunity and ability are enjoyed, is also a sure indication of an unjust and impenitent state of mind. It would seem impossible for a penitent soul not at once to see and be impressed with the duty of making confession and restitution to those who have been injured by him. When this is refused or neglected, there must be impenitence. The heart controls the life by a law of necessity; when, therefore, there is a heart that confesses and forsakes sin, it is impossible that this should not appear in outward confession and restitution.

13. A spirit of covetousness, or grasping after the world, is a sure indication of impenitence. "Covetousness is idolatry." It is a hungering and thirsting after, and devotion to this world. Acquisitiveness indulged must be positive proof of an impenitent state of mind. If any man love the world, how dwelleth the love of God in him?

14. A want of interest in, and compassion for, sinners, is a sure indication of impenitence. If one has seen his own guilt and ruin, and has found himself sunk in the horrible pit and miry clay of his own abominations, and has found the way of escape, to feel deeply for sinners, to manifest a great compassion and concern for them, and a zeal for their salvation, is as natural as to breathe. If this sympathy and zeal are not manifested, we may rely upon it that there is still impenitence. There is a total want of that love to God and souls that is always implied in repentance. Seest thou a professed convert to Christ whose compassions are not stirred, and whose zeal for the salvation of souls is not awakened? Be assured that you behold a hypocrite.

15. Spiritual sloth or indolence is another evidence of an impenitent heart. The soul that thoroughly turns to God, and consecrates itself to Him, and wholly commits itself to promote His glory in the building up of His kingdom, will be, must be, anything but slothful. A disposition to spiritual idleness, or to lounging or indolence of any kind, is an evidence that the heart is impenitent. I might pursue this subject to an indefinite length; but what has been said must suffice for this course of instruction, and is sufficient to give you the clue by which you may detect the windings and delusions of the impenitent heart.

(from C. G. Finney’s Systematic Theology)

Misunderstanding Repentance

Repentance means a genuine change of mind that affects the life in some way. Like other significant theological terms it must be defined specifically by asking a further question, namely, Change the mind about what? Unsaved people can truly repent but without being saved, as, for example, to change the mind about a bad habit and to break that habit as a result. Christians can repent of specific sins and stop doing them (Revelation 2:5; 2 Corinthians 7:9-notice that in this verse sorrow leads to repentance, but it is not necessarily the same as repentance). And unsaved people can repent unto salvation. This saving repentance has to involve a change of mind about Jesus Christ so that whatever a person thought of Him before, he changes his mind and trusts Him to be his Savior. That is the only kind or content of repentance that saves (Acts 2:38; 17:30; 2 Peter 3:9). However, saving repentance may be preceded by a repentance concerning sin (which activates an individual's sense of need for forgiveness) or a repentance toward God (which alerts him to the fact that he has offended a holy God and therefore needs a way to appease Him). This aspect of repentance (like John 16:8-11) is still not saving unless it is accompanied by faith in Christ (Acts 20:21).

(from Basic Theology, Copyright © 1986, 1999 by Charles C. Ryrie.)

Revelation 2:5
5 Remember then from what heights you have fallen. Repent (change the inner man to meet God's will) and do the works you did previously [when first you knew the Lord], or else I will visit you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you change your mind and repent. AMP

2 Corinthians 7:9
9 Yet I am glad now, not because you were pained, but because you were pained into repentance [and so turned back to God]; for you felt a grief such as God meant you to feel, so that in nothing you might suffer loss through us or harm for what we did. AMP

Acts 2:38
38 And Peter answered them, Repent (change your views and purpose to accept the will of God in your inner selves instead of rejecting it) and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of and release from your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. AMP

Acts 17:30
30 Such [former] ages of ignorance God, it is true, ignored and allowed to pass unnoticed; but now He charges all people everywhere to repent ( to change their minds for the better and heartily to amend their ways, with abhorrence of their past sins), AMP

2 Peter 3:9
9 The Lord does not delay and is not tardy or slow about what He promises, according to some people's conception of slowness, but He is long-suffering (extraordinarily patient) toward you, not desiring that any should perish, but that all should turn to repentance. AMP

John 16:8-11
8 And when He comes, He will convict and convince the world and bring demonstration to it about sin and about righteousness (uprightness of heart and right standing with God) and about judgment:
9 About sin, because they do not believe in Me [trust in, rely on, and adhere to Me];
10 About righteousness (uprightness of heart and right standing with God), because I go to My Father, and you will see Me no longer;
11 About judgment, because the ruler (evil genius, prince) of this world [Satan] is judged and condemned and sentence already is passed upon him. AMP

Acts 20:21
21 But constantly and earnestly I bore testimony both to Jews and Greeks, urging them to turn in repentance [that is due] to God and to have faith in our Lord Jesus Christ [that is due Him]. AMP

Isaiah 30:15
15 This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says:

"In repentance and rest is your salvation,
in quietness and trust is your strength,
but you would have none of it.

Matthew 3:8
8 Produce fruit in keeping with repentance . NIV

Matthew 3:11
11 "I baptize you with water for repentance . But after me will come one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not fit to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. NIV

Mark 1:4
4 And so John came, baptizing in the desert region and preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. NIV

Luke 3:3
3 He went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. NIV

Luke 3:8
8 Produce fruit in keeping with repentance . And do not begin to say to yourselves, 'We have Abraham as our father.' For I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham. NIV

Luke 5:32
32 I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance ." NIV

Luke 24:47
47 and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. NIV

Acts 5:31
31 God exalted him to his own right hand as Prince and Savior that he might give repentance and forgiveness of sins to Israel. NIV

Acts 11:18
18 When they heard this, they had no further objections and praised God, saying, "So then, God has granted even the Gentiles repentance unto life." NIV

Acts 13:24
24 Before the coming of Jesus, John preached repentance and baptism to all the people of Israel. NIV

Acts 19:4
4 Paul said, "John's baptism was a baptism of repentance . He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus." NIV

Acts 20:21
21 I have declared to both Jews and Greeks that they must turn to God in repentance and have faith in our Lord Jesus. NIV

Acts 26:20
20 First to those in Damascus, then to those in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and to the Gentiles also, I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds. NIV

Romans 2:4
4 Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, tolerance and patience, not realizing that God's kindness leads you toward repentance ? NIV

2 Corinthians 7:9
9 yet now I am happy, not because you were made sorry, but because your sorrow led you to repentance . For you became sorrowful as God intended and so were not harmed in any way by us. NIV

2 Corinthians 7:10
10 Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death. NIV