Repentance is the gift of God (Acts 5:31; 11:18; 2 Tim. 2:25). It is this grace of true repentance that carries believers through all their failings, weaknesses and sins. It is the doorway to holiness and the guardian that keeps true believers in holiness. Repentance does this by keeping believers in humble self-abasement, arising from a sense of the majesty and holiness of God and a recognition of how far short of his glory are their best duties. He that is not aware of the gracious sweetness in and the great usefulness of true repentance does not know what it is to walk with God. Whoever can taste no spiritual comfort in his sorrows from this grace of repentance, who thinks that repentance has to do only with the law and the fear of judgment, will not easily live in the practice of repentance every day of his life.

~ John Owen, Apostasy from the Gospel, (The Banner of Truth Trust: 2003), 112113.