John 3:5… “I say unto you, except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.”
Why would Jesus tell us to be born again? Believe it or not the answer is simple. We are all born into sin, into bondage. The Bible declares that because Adam sinned, all who are born after Adam are born with corruptible human nature (Romans 5:12). In Romans, Paul talks about how our human nature cannot please God, rather it is impossible to please him without Gods intervention (Rom. 8:12). Our human nature is greatly influenced and bound to sin because of the curse Adam and Eve allowed into the world through their disobedience. You are born innocent but we all have an evil nature, every single one of us will sin at some point in our life. We must all be BORN AGAIN and freed from our old, sinful nature that we are naturally born with (1 Peter 1:23).
Jesus not only tells us to be born again but he tells us how to be born again. In verse 5 of John Chapter 3 He states that the process consists of “Water and Spirit”. Jesus is revealing the born again process to contain two-steps. As we look through the scriptures we find more understanding on each step. When Jesus expressed that an individual must be born of the water, He was referring to being baptized by full immersion. The word baptize in the original language (Greek) of the New Testament means to “Dip, Submerge, or immerse”. All throughout the book of Acts we see Jesus’s Apostles commanding people to be baptized. We see Jesus in Mark 16:16 stating that you cannot be saved without being baptized.
What is so significant about Baptism and how does this relate to being born again you might ask? Great Question. Baptism is the avenue in which we can gain access to becoming completely washed of our sins. It is also the way that we take on the family name of Jesus. The scripture says that we are to become sons of God (Rom. 8:14-17) well when you become a son you take on your Fathers name. This is why every time someone was baptized in the Bible it was in the Name of Jesus. We must have his name applied to our lives, which signifies possession! We are now God’s possession, we are His son and receive His full inheritance! (Ephesians 1:11-14)
We all know that Jesus died on the cross and paid the price of redemption with his own blood but most do not realize that His death made the baptismal experience possible for you. When Jesus paid the ultimate price, He was taking on our sins for good, He was wiping it clean for us but we still have to receive that payment. Baptism is how we do that. When I go under the waters of Baptism, the scripture says that I become a new creature in Christ (2 Cor. 5:17, Galatians 3:26-27). My past is now completely gone, forgiven and forgotten by God. I now have a clean slate before him. The power is not in my good deeds but in my obedience to God’s word that I must be baptized. God responds to my obedience (Luke 11:28, John 14:15, Romans 5:19). Once I am baptized correctly in the Name of Jesus Christ I can go to him at any moment and any time and ask him for forgiveness and He will cleanse me and make me new again. Second Corinthians tells me that baptism puts me INTO Christ’s body; it puts me in covenant relationship with Him. Other scriptures on Baptism (Acts 2:38-41, Romans 6:1-18, 1 Peter 3:21, Acts 10:48, Acts 22:16, Colossians 2:12, Luke 3:16, Matthew 28:19-20, Acts 8:36-38, Ephesians 4:4-6, Acts 16:31-33)
The second step is being filled with God’s spirit, the Holy Ghost. Baptism puts me in Christ and the Holy Ghost puts Christ in me, making me ONE with God. This makes me a born again SON of God. The scripture states that when the first century church received the spirit for the first time they spoke in tongues as the spirit gave them the utterance (Acts 2:4-14). This experience was the outward sign of evidence that God had filled them completely with His spirit. In the book of Acts chapter 2 we see the Apostles experiencing this wonderful experience for the very first time, then we see them turn around and share this with the others around them resulting in 3,000 people being added to the church in one day!
If you search the whole Bible, especially the New Testament, since God’s spirit was not available until after Jesus’s death, you will only find one sign that is consistent throughout the scripture when somebody received God’s spirit. The consistent evidence was tongues. (Acts 2:4, Acts 10:45-46, Acts 19:6, Mark 16:17, 19). The Holy Spirit living in you is what will operate to change you and make you more like God (Romans 8:2-6). In order for me to live out this Christian walk and please God, I must be born again because that is the only hope that I will be supernaturally empowered to walk with God so I am not led astray by my sinful, human nature. We must be born again the way the Bible states.
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