It is true that when God sovereignly changes our hearts and gives life to what is dead, we ourselves repent, believe, and begin to obey him (see Eph. 2:1-10). We are passive in regeneration but are active in sanctification. True faith always shows up in truly good works. However, it’s all of grace. Abraham Kuyper put it well in his book on the work of the Holy Spirit. He noted that the regenerate Christian is not passive, but active in the Christian life. Then Kuyper wrote this:
But it is not implied that the elect and regenerate sinner is now able to do anything without God; or that if God should cease working in him, conversion and sanctification would follow of themselves. Both these representations are untrue, un-Reformed, and unchristian, because they detract from the work of the Holy Spirit in the elect.
No; all spiritual good is of grace to the end; grace not only in regeneration, but at every step of the way of life. From the beginning to the end and throughout eternity the Holy Spirit is the Worker, of regeneration and conversion, of justification and every part of sanctification, of glorification, and of all the bliss of the redeemed. Nothing may be subtracted from this.
Covenant Presbyterian Church (OPC)
Hammond, WI, 54015