People do not get a true healing until they know the disease under which they are suffering……The preacher’s work is to throw sinners down in utter helplessness that they may be compelled to look to Him who alone can help them….A sinner has a heart as well as a head; a sinner has emotions as well as thoughts; and we must appeal to both. A sinner will never be converted until his emotions are stirred. Unless he feels sorrow for sin, and unless he has some measure of joy in the reception of the Word, you cannot have much hope of him. The Truth must soak into the soul and dye it with its own color.
Spurgeon’s signs of true conversion
- Conviction of sin – People are not healed before they are wounded and brought into a certainty of justification without ever having lamented their condemnation…God never clothes men until He has first stripped them, nor does He quicken them by the gospel till first they are slain by the law
- Repentance of sin – (The regenerate have) sorrow for sin of having committed it, hatred of sin showing its dominion has ended and turning from sin
- Faith in Jesus – Some people think that Jesus only pardoned past sin…He bore all our sins or non; and He either saves us once for all or not at all.
- Real change of life – if a man doesn’t live differently from what he did before, his repentance needs to be repented of; and his conversion is a fiction…True regeneration implants a hatred of all evil; and where one sin is delighted in, the evidence is fatal to a sound hope. A man need not take a dozen poisons to destroy his life, one is quite sufficient.
- True prayer – Faith is the great gospel grace; but still we cannot forget that true faith always prays, and when a man professes faith in Jesus, and yet does not cry to the Lord daily, we dare not believe in his faith or his conversion.
- Obedience to all of God’s commandments – Jesus must be received as King as well as Priest…If the professed declares that he knows the Lord’s will but does not mean to do it, it’s you duty to assure him that he is not saved.
Source: What is it to Win a Soul in The Soul Winner by Charles Spurgeon