It is my belief that True Repentance from a biblical stand point far surpasses the simple definition given by a quick glance online at www.dictionary.com: (noun) deep sorrow, compunction, or contrition for a past sin, wrongdoing, or the like. This does not mean that I disagree or do not believe that the definition should not include such, but that there is so much more to the concept of True Repentance.
How often do persons (perhaps even ourselves) remain in sin all the while feeling a sense of sorrow for wrongdoing? Possibly so far as to cause one to fall into depression, while they wallow in despair. Is that True Repentance? Simply feeling sorrow about the lifestyle, thoughts, or actions we are currently involved in, while exercising no change to the contrary? What benefit would that provide, but to lead us further down the path of hopelessness?
I believe any biblical definition of True Repentance must be twofold. On the one side, there must not only be an emotion of sorrow but also an action of turning from sin intellectually, spiritually, and physically. Meaning we should think, desire, and move contrary to whatever we have been made aware of that needs repentance. Yet, we cannot merely turn from something without turning to something (or someone) else.
Therefore, the definition of True Repentance must include both the turning away from sin, and, secondly, the turning unto something (or someone) else; namely, faith in the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. For the acknowledgement, sorrow, and turning away from sin alone is not the cause of regeneration itself; though it is a necessary component of the conviction, confession, and conversion experience as a whole.
True Repentance, of the biblical nature, cannot simply end at the sorrow of sin, but must follow through with putting trust in the very Savior who can cleanse it. We are not and cannot be thoughtless or actionless beings; therefore, when we turn from one object we must of necessity turn unto another. It is marvelous to have a turning from sin, but such shall be fruitless without a turning unto Christ; for to turn anywhere but unto Him leaves us no better off than remaining in our original sin.
True Repentance may be defined as turning from sin to Christ.