41 “The people of Nineveh will stand up against this generation on judgment day and condemn it, for they repented of their sins at the preaching of Jonah. Now someone greater than Jonah is here—but you refuse to repent.
The city of Nineveh had been at a sinful high. The Lord had planned to destroy the people of the city, but was giving it a change to repent through the preaching of Jonah. Jesus was telling these Jews that the city of Nineveh did repent because of Jonah’s preaching and now He, the Son of God, was there preaching and they were refusing to repent.
God rejoices over those who repent of their sins. In Luke 15:7 Jesus says, “In the same way, there is more joy in heaven over one lost sinner who repents and returns to God than over ninety-nine others who are righteous and haven’t strayed away!” When a person repents they change their mind for the better and place it in agreement with God. They feel sorrow and remorse for their actions. It’s only through genuine sorrow and remorse one is able to accept the grace and mercy of God. But a person can also be sorrowful without repentance. Paul said in 2 Corinthians 7:10, “For the kind of sorrow God wants us to experience leads us away from sin and results in salvation. There’s no regret for that kind of sorrow. But worldly sorrow, which lacks repentance, results in spiritual death.” So those who continue to say they are sorry, but never change their attitude, never changing in their hearts due to their sins will slowly die a spiritual death. They continue to keep walking the opposite direction from God and never come to agree with Him about their sins. But the Lord is gracious and gives ample opportunity for repentance. It says in 2 Peter 3:9, “The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.” God is loving, merciful and kind. He is patient towards us and wants us to change and agree with Him on the sins in our life. Pray and confess your sins to God. Agree with Him that your sinful nature is the wrong direction to go and turn in His direction.