Conversion is an Ontological Change
Conversion does not mean you changed your beliefs.
Being is one of the ancient questions of Philosophy.
When Paul addressed the stoic and epicurean philosophers in Athens he addressed this by endorsing a previous philosopher/poet’s view:
In him we live and move and have our being.
It is a popular view that conversion is a change in belief, or that one ‘asks Jesus into their heart.’ That’s reductionistic to the point of falsehood. Rather conversion to Christ involves a change in one’s essential spiritual composition. It’s a change in being, or to use the philosophical term, it’s an ontological change.
The change of being at conversion to Christ is so drastic that your nature changes. The Spirit of God gives new life to such a degree that the process is called variously, ‘the new birth,’ regeneration, ‘born again.’
‘Truly, truly, unless one is born of water and Spirit, he cannot see the Kingdom of God.’
[Jesus Speaking], John 3:3
Its effects are to remove the heart corruption which keeps you an enemy and rebel against God. It unites you with God in heaven. It makes you a participant of Jesus work on the cross and resurrection (you die, you’re buried, you’re raised, you’re seated with Christ in heaven). It removes the automatic propensity to do human evil with a ingrained system of natural keeping of the Law of God.
Conversion means one’s life dies, disappears, and becomes an extension of Jesus himself. This is no mere change of beliefs. This is no new soul-occupant with you as the landlord. This is a change in world.