Have we ourselves repented? This, after all, is the question that concerns us most. It is well to know what the apostles taught. It is well to be familiar with the whole system of Christian doctrine.
But it is far better to know repentance by experience and to feel it inwardly in our own hearts. May we never rest until we know and feel that we have repented! There are no unrepentant people in the kingdom of heaven. All who enter in there have felt, mourned over, forsaken, and sought pardon for sin. This must be our experience, if we hope to be saved.
~ J.C. Ryle
Expository Thoughts on the Gospels: Mark, [Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1985], 116.