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YOU MUST BE BORN AGAIN !
BORN ONCE>>>DIE TWICE !
BORN TWICE>>>DIE ONCE !
THE CHOICE IS YOURS !
So what does this 'Christianese' term, as in, referring to this Christian terminology “You must be born again!” TRULY mean?
First of all the words “YOU MUST BE” definitely speak to me as we do NOT have an OPTION here, that is of course, if we desire to enter into the kingdom of God. So let's begin this study in God's word by reading John 3:1-10 which says,
“There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews;
The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that you do, except God be with him.
Jesus answered and said unto him, verily, verily, I say unto you, except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
Nicodemus said unto him, how can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb, and be born?
Jesus answered, verily, verily, I say unto you, except a man be born of water and of the spirit, he cannot enter in to the kingdom of God.
That which is born of flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
Marvel not that I said unto you, you must be born again.
The wind blows where it will, and you hear the sound thereof, but cannot tell whence (or from where) it comes, and whether it goes: so is everyone that is born of the spirit.
Nicodemus answered and said unto him, how can these things be?
Jesus answered and said unto him, are you a master of Israel, and know not these things?”
Now judging from this very last verse, where Jesus says unto Nicodemus, are you a master or teacher of Israel and you yourself do not know these things, speaking of this matter that a person MUST without fail be born again in order to enter into the kingdom of God?; Leads me to believe that this teaching of being born again is in the Old Testament ???????????????????????????? But before we take a look at the Old Testament, let's see what the New Testament has to say on this subject of being BORN AGAIN.
The ONLY other time we see the phrase “BORN AGAIN” is in 1 Peter 1:23 which teaches us HOW we are BORN AGAIN.
So then, let's read the entire CONTEXT of 1 Peter 1:23 by reading 1 Peter 1:1-25 which says,
2. ELECT according to (strangers or pilgrims born of the gospel who BECAME the ELECT according to WHAT? according to) the foreknowledge of God the Father, THROUGH sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.
3. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy has BEGOTTEN US AGAIN unto a lively HOPE (that is to say, ACCORDING to his abundant mercy we are BORN AGAIN unto a LIVELY HOPE) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
7. That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perishes, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
8. Whom having not seen, you love; in whom, though now you see him not, yet believing, you rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:
9. Receiving the END of your faith, EVEN the salvation of your SOULS.
10. Of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:
11. Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.
12. Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into. (However, being BORN AGAIN is offered ONLY to the human race and NOT to the fallen angels)
23. BEING BORN AGAIN , not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, BY the WORD of God, which lives and abides for ever.
(In others words, it is the INCORRUPTIBLE WORD of God added with FAITH that has caused us to be BORN AGAIN to WALK in OBEDIENCE THROUGH the power of the Holy Spirit)
So from this passage of scripture it is made clear that a person is BORN AGAIN BY the incorruptible WORD of Almighty God.
Also verse 23 shows us by using the word “BEING” that the BORN AGAIN experience takes place BEFORE one DIES, because Peter is talking to people who are ALREADY BORN AGAIN. I say this, because some teach that the meaning of being BORN AGAIN is when we are RESURRECTED to obtain ETERNAL LIFE in the world to come. And I do agree that ONE ASPECT of being born again does not become fully received until the resurrection of the dead in Christ when Jesus returns AT the SECOND COMING.
However, just as a SEED in planted in the soil it MUST be cared for or it will DIE. So likewise WE, who are BORN AGAIN, must without fail stay nourished with the word of God, lest we DIE ALSO and fall short of OBTAINING the reward of ETERNAL LIFE. In other words, just because a person is BORN AGAIN, this does NOT mean that that person is AUTOMATICALLY going to RECEIVE or OBTAIN eternal life when they die naturally or when Jesus comes again.
Please read the parable of the sower who is sowing seed found in Matthew 13:3-23 and in Mark 4:2-20. Jesus tells us this parable and then gives us the interpretation so there is no accusing one another saying, Well that is just YOUR interpretation. I strongly urge everyone to read this parable from BOTH gospels, because Jesus tells us basically that if we do not understand THIS parable, then how can we understand any other parable. But due to space I will just quote this account found in Matthew 13:3-23 which reads as follows,
"3. And he spake many things unto them in parables, saying, Behold, a sower went forth to sow;
4. And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up:
5. Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth:
6. And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.
7. And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them:
8. But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundred fold, some sixty fold, some thirty fold.
9. Who has ears to hear, let him hear.
10. And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speak you unto them in parables?
11. He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.
12. For whosoever has, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever has not, from him shall be taken away even that he has.
13. Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.
14. And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which says, By hearing you shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing you shall see, and shall not perceive:
15. For (0r because) this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes THEY have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted (or BORN AGAIN), and I should heal them.
16. But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear.
17. For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which you see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which you hear, and have not heard them.
18. Hear you therefore the parable of the sower.
19. When ANY ONE HEARS the WORD of the kingdom,
AND understands it not, then comes the wicked one, and catches away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side.
20. But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that hears the word, and anon with joy receives it;
21. Yet has he not root in himself, but endures for a while: for when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, by and by he is offended.
22. He also that received seed among the thorns is he that hears the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful.
23. But he that received seed into the good ground is he that hears the word, and understands it; which also bears fruit, and brings forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty."
Now let's take a look at the phrase or the terminology of being “BORN of God”, because Jesus tells us that we must be BORN from ABOVE.
John 1:11-13 tells us this,
But as many as RECEIVED him, to them gave he POWER (or in other word's to those who BELIEVE he GIVES POWER) to BECOME the sons of God, even to them that BELIEVE (that is to say, even to as many that steadfastly CONTINUE to BELIEVE unto the END) on his name:
Also please notice that upon the MOMENT of RECEIVING or BELIEVING the gospel that POWER was GIVEN to us to BECOME the sons of God. This is important, particularly when we take into consideration Romans chapter 8 that tells us that we are the sons of God IF and ONLY IF we OBEY the leading by the Holy Spirit of God. In other words, we must without fail WALK in OBEDIENCE to the Holy Spirit in order to OBTAIN the inheritance of SON SHIP, when Jesus comes again. In other words, the MOMENT we STOP obeying the word of God and walking after the leading of the Holy Spirit we forfeit our inheritance as a son or daughter of Almighty God, because we have NOT ACTUALLY RECEIVED the final part of being BORN AGAIN. Can you not see my dear brothers and sisters in the Lord that the final stage of being BORN AGAIN is not complete, UNTIL the RESURRECTION of the dead in Christ, which is WHEN Almighty God, the Father actually gives us to his Son Jesus to rule and reign in his kingdom for 1000 years.
“1. There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, WHO walk NOT after the flesh, but AFTER the Spirit. (However, if you choose NOT to OBEY the Holy Spirit and walk AFTER the FLESH, then you WILL have CONDEMNATION)
4. That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, WHO walk NOT after the flesh, but AFTER the Spirit.
In verse 14 we see that phrase “AS MANY AS” again. AS MANY AS RECEIVE him. AS MANY AS BELIEVE on his name. AS MANY AS MORTIFY the DEEDS of the FLESH. AS MANY AS are LED by the Spirit of Almighty God. AS MANY AS walk in OBEDIENCE to the Holy Spirit.
All this leads me to believe and teach that IF we FAIL to do these things, then we will NOT obtain ETERNAL LIFE, when Jesus comes again. Now please do not misunderstand what I am trying to say or convey to you. What I am trying to say is that we do NOT do these things in OUR OWN STRENGTH. In other words, we OBEY the word of God in FAITH, believing in the many precious promises that are given to us in his word to make us OVER COMERS of the FLESH and SIN. It is the Holy Spirit that EMPOWERS us to walk in OBEDIENCE, but we must BELIEVE and OBEY the word of God in order to OBTAIN eternal life in the END.
Please keep in remembrance that at the point in time in which we RECEIVE Jesus as our saviour and BELIEVE on his name then we become BORN AGAIN and the Holy Spirit begins to DWELL in us and begins to LEAD us to WALK in OBEDIENCE.
1 John 3:9 says it like this,
Now the phrase “CANNOT SIN” does NOT mean that it is IMPOSSIBLE to SIN. It simply means that our new nature of our INNER man will not ACCEPT or AGREE to SIN anymore. In other words, being BORN again means that there is a CHARGE within us that causes us to hate sin from WITHIN. Now our carnal mind that has NOT yet been RENEWED will still fight against our new born again INNER man and there will still be a desire or TEMPTATION to sin. However, the temptation comes from WITHOUT, meaning the OLD nature or the OLD man, who the NEW man must crucify on a daily basis. Trust me it does get easier after your mind is RENEWED to the word of God. So don't give up !
Then we read in 1 John 4:7
So another test to see if you are BORN of God is to take note of the change in your life in respect to LOVING one another. I mean seriously, I have witnessed some pretty hateful actions from some who CALL themselves Christians. Remember, if we WALK AFTER the FLESH we shall DIE. In other words, LOVING one another is NOT an OPTION, it is a COMMANDMENT from Almighty God our creator.
Now please consider 1 John 5:1 which says,
Now the word “BELIEVES” is greatly misunderstood. The DEVILS BELIEVE, but simply BELIEVING does not save them. Jesus tells us that IF we BELIEVE him, then we will KEEP his sayings. I will share more on this later.
But for now please read 1 John 5:4 which reads,
FAITH is another one of those misunderstood subjects. Please see some of my other studies on this topic, because you MUST understand FAITH in order to OVERCOME sin in your life.
Now please read 1 John 5:18
Now this is a PROMISE that is well worth the time to study out in detail. See my study “Living your life free from sin”
Also Galatians 4:19 gives us an important clue as to HOW a person is BORN AGAIN.
It is also very important to notice that Paul is travailing in prayer for these brothers and sisters who were at one time truly BORN AGAIN believers to be BORN AGAIN yet a second or perhaps third time. This CLEARLY shows us that a true BORN AGAIN believer can become ensnared with the deceitfulness of sin and fall away from the faith. And if they are not prayed and admonished by the gospel so that they can recover themselves out of the snare of the enemy by REPENTING of their SIN. And IF they REMAIN in SIN and DIE in this fallen state of SIN, then will NOT INHERIT eternal life, because Romans chapter 8 clearly tells us that we are SONS and DAUGHTERS of God ONLY when we OBEY the leading of the Holy Spirit. The doctrine of once saved always saved is a doctrine of devils! For a deeper understanding on this subject please read the study entitled "DOES THE BIBLE TEACH THAT ONCE YOU ARE SAVED YOU ARE ALWAYS SAVED?"
1 Thessalonians 2:9 says,
2 Thessalonians 3:8 reads,
1 Corinthians 4:15 says,
Revelation 1:5 says,
“And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,”
Then we are told in Colossians 1:15,18 that Jesus is the FIRSTBORN of every creature. And ALSO that Jesus is the FIRSTBORN from the DEAD, which tells us that WE ALSO will be BORN from the DEAD, that is to say, those of US who REMAIN FAITHFUL and ENDURE unto the END will be BORN AGAIN from the dead in order to OBTAIN our REWARD of ETERNAL LIFE.
We are told that those who are IN Christ are a NEW CREATION, and that old things are passed away, and all things are made new.
Ephesians 4:17-32 says,
Colossians 3:1-25 says it like this,
“1. If you then be risen with Christ (speaking of being BAPTISED in his death and rising again or being BORN AGAIN to a NEW LIFE walking in RIGHTEOUSNESS), seek those things which are above, where Christ sits on the right hand of God.
In other words, EVEN if you are a Christian, that is to say, a BORN AGAIN CHILD of God and DO that which is WRONG and do NOT REPENT of the WRONG which you have done, then you will RECEIVE the REWARD or WAGES of your SIN. Need I say more !
NO SERVICE TO GOD IN RIGHTEOUSNESS;
NO RECEIVING THE REWARD OF THE INHERITANCE !
The word of God talks about the INNER man, or the HEART of man and how it needs to be STRENGTHENED. Please read Ephesians 3:16,17 which says,
Heart, spirit, soul, spirit and soul, mind, flesh, carnal minded, fleshly nature, newness of life.
Luke 8:55 teaches us that when the SPIRIT of man leaves the body, then the body dies.
And in Acts 7:59,60 we learn that the SPIRIT of a FAITHFUL believer goes to be with the Lord when their body dies.
Romans 2:28,19 says,
In other words, the HEART of man, the spirit of man, and the INNER man or NEW man are all speaking of the SAME things, which is the real you that goes to be with the Lord in heaven when you die to AWAIT the RESURRECTION of the dead in Christ when Jesus comes again AT his SECOND coming.
Try picturing a target of three concentric circles, where the outermost ring, band or circle represents your body, that is to say your flesh or carnal nature, and the middle ring, band, or circle represents your soul, which is composed of reasoning, feelings, such as emotions as well as physical pain. Then the inner ring, spot or circle is INNER man, the spirit or the heart of man. It is this part of man that becomes BORN AGAIN by the word of God.
Now the word of God teaches us that the SOUL and the SPIRIT of man are CONNECTED and can only be separated by the WORD of God.
“For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”
To me, I see the SOUL as the means by which the spirit of man communicates to the body of man. In other words, the soul and the body are ALSO connected to each other, but in a different way. What I mean by this is that when the body dies the soul and spirit remain connected and both the spirit and soul go to be with God, IF SO BE that this person is BORN AGAIN and has been found to be FAITHFUL unto the END.
To, me the soul is the the MEMORY of the brain. It is the part of man that make you, you. Let's start at the beginning, because I am assuming you already know some things that I have not shared as yet in this particular study in God's word. In the beginning God formed man out of the dirt or dust of the earth, then God breathed LIFE into this BODY of man and man BECAME a LIVING SOUL.
Now to me, the LIFE that God breathed into man is the Spirit of God himself. And as far as I can tell this Spirit of God that causes us to be ALIVE or living beings will remain CONNECTED to the SOUL of each individual, UNTIL the day of JUDGMENT. Then on this day of JUDGMENT, if you are found to be RIGHTEOUS, then God grants to you this LIFE to forever remain in you as your OWN. In other words, you inherit ETERNAL LIFE and the SECOND DEATH will have NO power over you. However, if one is found to be UNRIGHTEOUS, then BOTH the BODY and the SOUL are DESTROYED in the LAKE of FIRE and the Spirit return back to God.
This is why Jesus WARNS us NOT to fear man, but rather to FEAR God who is able to DESTROY BOTH the BODY and the SOUL.
Please read it for yourself in Matthew 10:28 which says,
Now while the spirit and soul are connected and can only be separated by the word of God, it also seems that the soul and the body are connected in that the soul influences the body and at the same time the body also influence the soul. This is why the SOUL is the NEXT in line to be SAVED or RENEWED in order to bring about the SUBMISSION of the body or the subduing of the FLESH.
In other words, so long as the soul continues to TAKE ORDERS, if you will, from the FLESH then it becomes TWO against ONE, so to speak, in the FAVOR of the OLD nature of man.
However, the MORE we RENEW our MINDS to the WORD of God, then the MORE the SOUL begins to not only refusing the orders or BEGGING of the FLESH, but also begins to JOIN with the INNER man to CRUCIFY and SUBDUE the FLESH.
I will continue this study in God's word under a new study entitled “RENEWING OUR MINDS TO THE WORD OF GOD”
Thanks for getting into God's word and may God bless you richly as you continue to seek the TRUTH of the WHOLE word of God.
Your brother in Jesus Christ,
Now and forever,
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