Jesus said, “You’re absolutely right. Take it from me: Unless a person is born from above, it’s not possible to see what I’m pointing to—to God’s kingdom.”John chapter 3 verse 3 from The Message
It’s time to bring this–call it my musings or my rants–to an end. I prefer to think of these words as “one who is crying out in the wilderness”! Just a quick reminder: Cuss words are words we just don’t say or need to say in public, or even in private. And today’s New Cuss Word is Conversion. According to Google, the definition of Conversion is “the process of changing or causing something to change from one form to another.”
I have a Honda Goldwing; but it has had a Conversion Kit installed to change it from two wheels to 3 wheels. Now this Goldwing doesn’t have the same characteristics as it did when it was made–in fact, it can’t have the same characteristics because it’s been “converted” from it’s original condition. One of the many big things for John Wesley was his desire to see the Conversion of people. Call it Conversion, Being Born Again, or Saved the results are the same. Just like my Goldwing has completely changed from how it was made in the factory, so we need to be completely changed.
Wesley would insist that everyone is under sin’s influence. But to break free of sin’s influence and domination over our lives required that we be changed completely from the inside out. But the message of progressives ignores this need we all have to be Converted! (See in the first paragraph the meaning of “conversion”!) They believe–and want the rest of us to believe–that Conversion isn’t really necessary. All we need to do is just love God and love people.
They justify their abandonment of the Orthodox understand of sexuality by saying that Spiritual Gifts exist in those who live outside of that Biblical Sexual Ethic. They insist that by calling homosexuality incompatible with Christianity we are denying them a place to exercise their “spiritual gifts”. If they see Spiritual Gifts inside them, then those gifts exist in them. Thus it means that God has justified their “preferred choice of sin”. However, there can be no Spiritual Gifts outside of the indwelling and abiding presence of The Holy Spirit inside each of us. And The Holy Spirit does not fill nor abide inside the heart and spirit of any person until they have been Converted. Now, The Holy Spirit is around them–pursuing them–but The Spirit is not abiding. In fact, The Spirit cannot abide in any heart that is still corrupted and polluted with sin. That why Conversion is necessary. When Nicodemus was confused about what Jesus meant by saying we must be born from above, Jesus clarified it:
Jesus said, “You’re not listening. Let me say it again. Unless a person submits to this original creation—the ‘wind-hovering-over-the-water’ creation, the invisible moving the visible, a baptism into a new life—it’s not possible to enter God’s kingdom. When you look at a baby, it’s just that: a body you can look at and touch. But the person who takes shape within is formed by something you can’t see and touch—the Spirit—and becomes a living spirit.John chapter 3, verses 5 and 6 from The Message
By circumventing the necessity for Conversion, we continue to live outside God’s Original Design. Any group that chooses to call itself a “church” must have at its core the conviction that Conversion must happen in each of us. And thus we see today the Chaos and Decline of The United Methodist Church. Our leadership and some of my fellow clergy want us to sidestep the necessity of Conversion for a process that resembles the World–but NOT the Kingdom of God. A church without the message of Conversion is–well, it isn’t a church, that’s for sure. It’s a vessel from The Enemy to decieve the people from The Truth. We must be changed from one thing–one form–to a completely different life. The Life that Jesus modeled for us–The Life that Jesus died to provide for us–cannot become a reality until we are Converted.