Which is Better: Repentance or Moral Effort?

When people fail in doing good and make bad choices some of them feel shame, others try to cover it and hide the shame. Those who hide it, promise to make an effort not to do it again.

Repenting monk

Romania – North eastern of the Moldavian province July 2007
An orthodox monk praying in the church of Neamt monastery.
Photo: Ezequiel Scagnetti ©

The promise of a moral effort is a good thing, but is it enough? But how can you say that you will try harder if you do not fill any remorse or repentance for the wrong you have done? See what Father Stephen Freeman writes in this article titled “When Words Fail.”

The promise to try harder, to work more, to be better can themselves be little more than an effort to avoid the shame of our failures. They “lessen the blows.” How can we say we will try harder? If we are honest with ourselves and with God we will admit that our efforts have failed before and will likely fail again. Our promises are words that stand between us and the silence of shame.


Repentance is the path to knowledge of God and salvation. Repentance is far greater than mere moral effort. This is why there is a big difference between morality and spirituality.

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Armen Hareyan

Armen Hareyan

I am a Subdeacon of the Armenian Apostolic Church. Love the Lord and love people. In this website I write daily inspirational messages about Christian Spiritual Life to help people to grow in faith.

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