The Impossibility of Loving Jesus Before Conversion
by Pastor Dan Delzell
No one loves Jesus before he gets converted. No one. That’s because only the Holy Spirit dwelling on the inside of you can give you a love for Jesus Christ. It is impossible to have that love without the work of the Spirit. Period.
The new birth is nothing any of us can brag about as though we did something to deserve it, or make it happen. We simply received the good news that was presented to us in the message of the Gospel. That is how a person gets converted. Right now at this very moment, you are either spiritually alive in Christ or spiritually dead in your sin. There is no third option.
We are all lawbreakers. Once we get that point in our heart and in our head, we are one step closer to embracing the good news of forgiveness through faith in Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit brings us to Jesus. He works the miracle of the new birth. The next thing we know, Jesus is our Savior. That’s when we start wanting to follow Him because of what He has done for us. We get motivated the instant we get born again.
So are you born again? Do you know that Christ died for your sins, and are you trusting in Him to forgive you? If not, it is currently impossible for you to love Jesus. You may admire Him, or long to be like Him. But you don’t love Him. It simply cannot happen until you enter a relationship with Him. That’s just the way it works within the soul.
God commands us to love Him with all of our heart, soul, and mind. And yet, we cannot fulfill it. We have a “love deficiency” when it comes to God. We love ourselves. We love our things. But we don’t love God. That is, until He places His love within us.
Spiritual conversion is a miracle. It changes people. It completely transforms us into a new creation. We still have the old nature within us, but we now have the life of God and the presence of God within us as well. And that is where this love for Jesus originates. It never originates within us, but must be placed within us as God comes to dwell in us.
“God is love.” (1 John 4:8) Where He goes, love goes. Where He dwells, love dwells. The soul without Christ is a soul which lacks the love of God. It may possess much human love, and that is something. But without conversion, the love of God is not there.
We might as well tell an unbeliever to jump to the moon as to tell him to start loving Jesus. He can’t do it. It’s impossible. He needs a boost. He needs a “rocket” of God’s love to shoot him to the moon. That is, to propel him to begin loving Jesus. The Holy Spirit provides such power. He was sent to earth to convert people, and empower us to witness for Christ, and fill us with a love for God and for others. “The fruit of the Spirit is love.” (Gal. 5:22)
In order to be converted, you must realize you are a sinner. You must realize you need God. You need to see what Jesus did in order to rescue you from your sin. Do you see it? Do you believe it? Or is the cross of Christ and His empty tomb still pretty fuzzy to you? Once you latch on to this bedrock of Christianity through faith, you will “go to the moon” with God. You enter an entirely new dimension of reality. It’s God reality, and His dimension of love. Without conversion, man lives far below where God would like to bring him.
Are you resisting God? If so, the message of salvation through Jesus may irritate you a little, or a lot. That’s because it doesn’t make sense to you yet. It perhaps even seems foolish to you. That’s because you are not yet converted. “The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” (1 Cor. 1:18)
When you see it for the first time, you think: “How did I miss it for so long?” It truly is a message simple enough for child to understand, and yet too deep for the smartest person in the world to grasp. It eludes us until we get converted. Then it becomes everything to us. It’s an all or nothing proposition. You either have total and complete forgiveness of your sins, or none at all. You are either converted, or unconverted. Saved, or lost. Born again, or spiritually dead. Christian, or unbeliever. Everything related to religious belief and unbelief ultimately comes back to Christ. He is the center of the universe, and the Savior of all.
What about the other religions? Well, they are “Christ-less.” Once you accept Jesus, your faith is priceless. After all, who can put a dollar figure on eternal life. Everyone wants it, but seemingly few know where to get it. That is why we need the Gospel. It is only in Christ that have forgiveness, salvation, and God’s love.
What a treasure Jesus is to every believer. Every converted person knows what I am talking about. Every lost person can only try to imagine what it must be like to know the Lord. Would you like to know Him? Just come to Him today in humility and faith. Confess your sin to Him. Trust Him to forgive you. Believe that He died for your sins on the cross, and then rose again. Simple message. Profound results for the believer.
You will never love Jesus until you are converted. This could be your day to begin that journey with Jesus. Or it might be like every other day without Him. Which is it going to be for you my friend? The Messiah waits for your response. But then He will be traveling on from here as He continues to gather others into His fold. Will you be with Him, or left behind lingering in your doubt and unbelief?
This is your moment. This is your day. “Yes” or “no” to the King of Kings. You make the call. It’s your life, and it’s your future. Proceed with careful consideration and reflection. This is a much bigger deal than you and I can fully appreciate right now.
Jesus is passing by. Do you see Him? Do you want to go with Him? What has been impossible for you until now can become possible, but only through the supernatural transformation of spiritual conversion.