In the trucking industry, we have a saying, “The moment you believe you know it all, is the time you need to get out of the truck”.

In the chapter Abomination of Desolation, I made a comment that “now it the time for conversion”; and after I sent that chapter out, I had this deep feeling that that comment either bothered some people or some self-confident people felt they had nothing else to do.

The moment you believe you are saved or born again is the moment you need to take another look in the mirror.

The thought that we are not to second-guess our salvation comes from the belief and teachings of some denominations, and it is absolutely un-Biblical.

In 1 Corinthians 1, Paul says, “but to us who are being saved”. It’s a process.

In 2 Corinthians 13.5, Paul says, “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves.”

Before a court case, attorneys will test their client. They’ll run mock questioning to make sure they are ready. We should be doing the same with ourselves because when that great day of Judgement comes, we don’t want to be “eaten up” by the prosecuting attorney.

What is a conversion? In John 3.3 Jesus declared, "I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.". Conversion is being born again.

A few weeks ago, I heard a pastor say he no longer asks if a person is saved; he instead asks, “How’s your relationship with Christ?” I would also add, that I would not ask a person if they are born again.

Many of my readers are old enough to remember the OLD VW beetles. The new ones really are nothing like the old ones. I remember my brother having one. As a kid, it was the strangest little car I’ve ever seen. I opened the hood looking for the engine only to find the trunk. It had a unique blender sound while going down the road, and you could fix it with virtually any household item.

I remember when those old versions were out, there was a kit you could buy that replaced the hood and trunk and made it look like a Rolls-Royce. Somebody must have really had some high expectations of their little VW.

Now, it did not matter what you did to the outside of this car. It may have had a Rolls-Royce hood and trunk, it still sounded like, and still was a VW.

Many people out there say they are saved and they are born again, and they wear crosses around their neck and go to church on Sunday. But, it’s not what is on the outside that makes you converted; it’s what is on the inside that tells who you are.

I’ve also seen many people doing good things, but some believe that life is like a scale and if they can do more good things those bad things, then they will make it to Heaven. But, this is a self-centered way of doing things. These people are not doing what they are doing for God, they are doing it for themselves. Being converted is the point of where we are transformed from living self-centered lives to living a life for God.

Conversion is a change of mind, issuing of a change of heart, and leading to a change of life.

In Luke 18.10-13, we see a parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector. Now, tax collectors at the time of Christ were thought about no better than they are now.

10"Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11The Pharisee stood up and prayed about[ himself: 'God, I thank you that I am not like other men—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.' 13"But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, 'God, have mercy on me, a sinner.'

The Pharisee came pleading HIS goodness, but the tax collector came pleading for forgiveness, and which do you think was converted?

I’ve heard many people say, “what don’t you know, I’m the fourth generation in my family to be members (or leaders) in this church, I’ve gone to seminary, and even taught.” But, are you converted? Just because you were raised in and go to church does not mean you are converted.

I recently heard in a poll that about one in twenty on the church books are prepared to close their earth history. They professedly serve God, but more earnestly serve self, mammon, and worldly possessions and activities.

Now that is a scary thought to think that when you go to church, about only one in twenty of those you are seated with are spiritually prepared for death. Now, we must not point fingers the other way without standing in a mirror yourself.

Pastors, when you are looking into your congregation and think that only about 1 in 20 are ready; are you teaching according to what has been commanded, or are you teaching “feel good messages”? Jesus said, many will come and say Lord Lord and He’ll say, “I don’t know you.”

Are we converted? I once heard a pastor say, “being in church doesn’t make you a Christian no more than being in McDonald’s makes you a hamburger.”

We can sometimes get involved doing good things and still have no relationship with God.

There was a time in the walk of Christ when Martha was preparing a meal for Jesus while Mary is spellbound with listening to Jesus.

Martha came to Jesus saying, tell her Lord to get up and help me. Jesus said back to her, Martha, Martha you are worried and troubled about many things but one thing is needed. Now, Mary was doing what leads to conversion.

Many people are worried about doing many things; even to the service; but they are missing out on the true message.

Many know that I attend synagogue on Saturday and church on Sunday. And the ONLY reason I attend that church on Sunday is that it is unlike all the others. The pastor teaches “meat” in his sermons, attention is not focused on how pretty the church is, or how good the music is, or how many concert style lights we can have flashing on the over-amplified eight-piece band. The pastor concentrates more on the quality of the people. Even still, I hear more bickering from the people who are leading the serving and wanting to serve the church. They “are worried and troubled about many things but one thing is needed”

I will submit to you that receiving Christ is not the same thing as being converted. You can make a mental decision to accept Christ, but conversion is beyond choice, even beyond faith. It’s what happens in your heart and mind because of faith. The devils believe and tremble but they are not converted.

A real convert is not someone who is one man at church and another at home.

How do you know you are converted? It is true there may be an outward correctness without a renewing power of Christ. Can an atheist quit smoking? Can an atheist turn from their alcohol? Not because they love God, but for purely selfish reasons people can do good things.

Self-respect may lead us to an appearance of conversion... “I can’t do that; what would people think”... not “what would God think”. A selfish heart may perform generous actions. By what means do we decide which side we are on? Who owns the heart? If we are in Christ, our thoughts are with Him, our sweetest thoughts are of Him. Everything we have and are is consecrated to Him. We long to bear His image, to breath His Spirit. We want to be like Him. In Matthew 7.16 Jesus says, you’ll know them by their fruits. A wolf is still a wolf, and it’s still a Volkswagen.

There is a deadly teaching that is popular that all you do is articulate that you accept Christ and you are converted. But, you must be born again. Is a baby born the day it’s conceived or is there a gestation period? In most cases, there is a period of sanctification that transpires in which a person is converted. Isaiah chapter 1 says we learn to do good; there is a learning period; there is a process.

If we know ourselves by our fruits, what then are the fruits? Galatians 5.22 gives the fruits; are you converted? Look at the list. A changed life is the best evidence of a conversion.

19The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity, and debauchery; 20idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness, and self-control.

For you young people who don’t understand old Volkswagens; there are many types of computer files. In sound files, there are mp3, wav, wma, etc. If you have a mp3 player that is not capable of playing a wma, all you get is computer gibberish. Now, you could take the “wma” tag at the end of the file and change it to “mp3” but it still will not play. The file has to be converted, and you must use a special converting program to do so.

In order for you to operate with a glorified body, you can’t just change the name; you have to be converted. The essence of who you are must be changed.

The most radical conversion in the Bible is that of Saul whose name was changed to Paul. The conversion was not in the name, but for the sake of simplicity, we are going to call him Paul.

In Acts 9 Paul was headed to Damascus to kill the Cristian’s gathering there. The Spirit of the Lord spoke to Paul and asked, why do you persecute me? Paul then asked, “who are you, Lord?”

Now here’s Paul who thought he was working for the Lord and he didn’t even know who the Lord was. Now is the time for us to ascertain if we don’t know who He is. After He comes it’s too late to ask that question, now it the time we must be honest with ourselves. Paul thought he knew the Lord and thought he was working for the Lord and all along he was working against Him. Could that happen to us? There are many people out there who are taking the position of leader and they are leading others, but they are leading people the wrong way.

I really enjoy the movie “Book of Eli”. Aside from some of the “choice words” used in it, it really had several good messages. I brought up the movie to a pastor friend of mine in downtown Atlanta who asked me, “did you realize he was blind”. I said, “yes, but would you expect anything different from God?”. He replied, “only a blind man could be led by God”

I would have to say, unless you are blind, you cannot be converted. Just watch...

Was Paul converted exactly at the conversation with the Lord? I don’t believe so. On his way to Damascus, Paul was leading a group of men to kill Christian’s. After his conversation with the Lord, Paul was stricken with blindness for three days. For those three days, those same men that he was leading was now leading him; and when they arrived in Damascus he ended up teaching about the same Christ he was going to persecute.

I believe it was those three days in which he was humbled in having to be led; and he was blind and could not look at circumstances around him, that he could evaluate his life and make that conversion.

We can not be led by Christ if we are busy looking at our circumstances in life. When we look at our own circumstances we end up leading our own lives, and leading our own lives leads us further from God. The conversion has not happened.

How do we know that Paul was converted? By his fruits in Damascus; and he didn’t turn back either.

Ezekiel 18.21
21 "But if a wicked man turns away from all the sins he has committed and keeps all my decrees and does what is just and right, he will surely live; he will not die.

Ezekiel 33.11
11 Say to them, 'As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign LORD, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn from their ways and live. Turn! Turn from your evil ways! Why will you die,

The evidence of conversion is in the fruit.

We are saved by grace through faith, but that faith in Christ will affect a change in life. It has a sanctifying influence that converts the behavior. If a person is saying Lord, Lord; while they are living a life of rebellion, they are hypocrites.

In Luke 22.32, Jesus (at the end of His ministry) tells Peter, “when you are converted”. Now Peter was one of the 12 disciples, he was an apostle appointed by Jesus; he went around preaching and performing miracles through Christ, and Jesus says “WHEN you are converted”. After all that time, and all that service and Peter was still not converted.

Why must we be converted? The fact that there are only 1 out of 20 in the church that may be converted, hurts the work of the church. Why did the gospel go like wild in the first generation? Jesus spent 3 1/2 years helping to affect the genuine conversion of just 12.

When do you think Peter was converted? When he was blinded. Peter denied Christ three times, the One he followed for 3 1/2 years, and after the third time, Jesus looked at him through His blood and sweat and Peter was blinded by his own tears, and he ran and wept in the garden. Peter was converted.

I ask, have you been converted? Have you been blinded by tears in seeing the Christ who suffered and died for you look at you in your sinful walk; a hypocritical walk? I assure you, I’ve seen people go to the alter after seeing the Messiah, and they’re so blinded by their tears, and so broken that they can barely walk and must have a friend help lead them. They pass by me and I actually feel my spirit jump. That is the path to conversion my friends.

Now is the time for conversion.