True Conversion

Date: AM
Text: Colossians 3; Lord's Day 33
Psalters: 227, 338, 7, 271
  1. Its description.
    1. Conversion presupposes and follows from regeneration.
      1. Regeneration is God’s work of imparting a new life into the hearts of His elect.
      2. The brings conflict between our new life and our old man (sin dwelling within, the body of this death, Rom. 7:17b,24).
    2. Other descriptive thoughts concerning true conversion.
      1. There is initial conversion and there is on-going, never-ending conversion.
      2. Conversion mostly takes place WITHIN the believer, and is not visible: “sorrow,” “hate,” “joy.”
    3. Conversion is God’s working in the elect, so the elect, regenerated sinner becomes active (Canons III,IV-10b,11b,12b).
      1. God turns us in such a way that the regenerated sinner is active in turning (Canons III,IV-14b).
      2. God converts, turns, gives repentance and they delight to do His will (Acts 5:31; II Tim. 2:25).
  2.    Conversion may be differently experienced, but it always has two elements given in the Catechism.
    1. Conversion always has the mortification of the old man: repenting: godly sorrow and confession of sin and sinfulness.
      1. Mortification is the putting to death (Col. 3:5; Romans 8:13) or putting off (Col. 3:8,9; Eph. 4:22) of the believer’s old man.
      2. Mortification is possible because the Spirit of Christ convicts, showing us that we are sinning against command and love.
    2. The faith which mortifies also quickens (enlivens, put on of the new man) (cf. Romans 6:5; Eph. 4:24; Col. 3:12).
      1. This takes place by the renewing of our mind (Eph. 4:23) whereby we consider God’s work for us in Christ.
      2. It is a delight to desire and to do what my Savior wants me to do. It is the desire to live before God in all good works.
  3. Are you always converting?
    1. Are you striving to see your sin and your sinfulness; and see their seriousness because of the Father’s love?
    2. Is there progress in your conversion: sorrow deepening, less tolerant of sins, more understanding of those overtaken by a sin.