One of my favorite Peanuts comic strips features Charlie Brown saying to Snoopy, “I hear you’re writing a book on theology. I hope you have a good title.” Snoopy responds, “I have the perfect title: Has It Ever Occurred To You That You Might Be Wrong?”
Snoopy’s title reminds us that our understanding of God and what He requires of us is sometimes twisted. Because our wrong beliefs lead to wrong behavior, we need to “repent, turn to God, and do works befitting repentance” (Acts 26:20).
The Greek word translated “repent” is metanoeo, which means “change your mind.” As Paul indicated, repentance does not mean just nodding in polite agreement with God, and continuing the same way we were going. When we turn our thoughts toward God—when we truly agree with Him about what is right—our behavior will follow. Like a car, we go in the direction we are pointed. So, when we truly turn our minds and hearts toward God, our actions change accordingly.
Instead of going happily along, assuming that our choices are right, we need to regularly stop and ask ourselves Snoopy’s question. As Paul taught, it is only when we are willing to admit being wrong that we can be certain of being right with God.