What Does It Mean To Be Born Again? Part 1

28 September 2013

What does it mean to be “born again”?

We hear captains of industry, athletes, entrepreneurs, and others saying that they have been “born again” with a new perspective on their field of interest. Generally, this means they have gotten some form of “second-wind” and renewed energy in their pursuit.

But what does the Bible say about being born again? Is it simply a new way of thinking or a fresh start? Or, does it mean something much greater and more powerful than normal human experience can compare? John chapter 3 contains a conversation between the Lord Jesus and a Jewish Rabbi named Nicodemus. Nicodemus was a well-learned man in the religion of the Pharisees, and had obviously seen that Jesus was no regular teacher. He comes to Jesus by night inquiring as to who Jesus really is. Jesus’ answer reveals this wonderful doctrine of God’s sovereign grace. Jesus tells Nicodemus that you must be born again to understand who He is.

The Source of the New Birth

When a musician tells another musician, “take it from the top,” we all know he means to play the song again. When Jesus tells Nicodemus, and us, “Except a man be born again,” He means essentially the same thing. This change must come from the “top” or from “above.” The first thing we must discover about the new birth is its source. John 1:12-13 states: But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God,even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. According to this text, God is the source or cause of the new birth. We are not born again because our parents were (of blood). Nor are we born again of our own free-will or decision (will of the flesh). Neither can we cause someone else to be born again with our prayers or efforts (will of man). The Bible plainly teaches that it is by the will of God that this new birth takes place. The preposition “of” shows the source or origin. The origin is God, resides in God, and the new birth comes from God above.
People are not born again because of their own decision or something they do, but solely by God’s sovereign will.

Next Article-The Nature of the New Birth

Bryce Lowrance

Elder Bryce Lowrance

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