Ye Must Be Born Again!

Why do Bible believers say over and over that you must be born again?  Because the Bible tells us that you must be born again.  It’s black and white.  There is no wiggle room.  Either you are born again or you are NOT born again.  If you are born again, the Bible promises that you will see the Kingdom of God (John 3:3).  If you are NOT born again, the Bible promises that you will see the Lake of Fire (Rev 20:15).  The choice is up to you, and you alone.  It is not up to your mother, your father, your sister, or your brother.  It is not up to your nation, your community, your town, or your church.  There is no collective effort or collaboration in this matter.  There is no way to cheat or to substitute someone else’s passing grade as your own.  I am going to sound like a broken record here because this concept is that important for you to grasp.  Why? I don’t want you to end up in Hell like the millions (if not billions) of people who have wound up there before you.

John 3:3  “Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God.”

Did you read that?  What does that verse say?  It says a man must be born again to see the Kingdom of God.  Are you born again?  Do you even know what it means to be born again?  Do you even care enough about your own soul to investigate the question?  Do you want to see the Kingdom of God?  Do you even know what the Kingdom of God is (Romans 14:17)?  Do you love God enough to take five minutes to find out?  Have I made you uncomfortable by asking these questions?  Why are you uncomfortable?  Is it because your conscience is telling you that you are NOT born again?  Is it because you have lived your life in defiance of God and not believed on your Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ?  Is it because you think you are such a good person that God will allow you into Heaven based on your works?  I have news for you, you are probably NOT born again if you are made uncomfortable by the sentence:  “Ye must be born again.”

John 3:7  Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.

How about verse seven?  What does it say?  It says do not marvel at the phrase, “ye must be born again.”  I know somebody commented that he does not like the phrase:  “born again.”  He claims he don’t like the phrase because too many “bad” people claim to be born again.  This sounds reasonable, until one understands that all people (including those born again) are fallen sinners in a fallen world.  Of course there are “bad” people who are born again as we are all destined to sin, although we must ask the question, are they “bad” in man’s eyes or God’s?  While they won’t admit it, the real reason they do not like the phrase because they are NOT born again.  Many hypocrites will say that being “born again” is pretentious or over-used by liars, pretenders, fakes.  I say, “So what?”  Stop the excuses.  Those people will have their judgment.  The question you must ask is:  will you also have yours?

1 Peter 1:23  Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.

How are you born again?  1 Peter 1:23 tells us directly.  We are born again by the word of God.  What was that?  The word of God?  Where can that be found?  It can be found in English in the King James Bible.  It is your foundation in a world filled with confusion as God promises that his word will live and abide for ever.  This promise is re-iterated in Psalm 12:6:7 (pure words, preserved for ever),Matthew 5:8 and Luke 16:7 (till heaven and earth pass, not one tittle will pass from the law).  If somebody tries to steal the promises of the English Bible from you by changing 60,000 “archaic” words and thereby confusing scripture, please turn them to 1 Corinthians 14:33 and ask them who is the author of confusion and why they are following him.

So, if we are born again by the word of God, what does the word of God say on being born again?  Let’s go back to our starting point:  John Chapter 3.

John 3:3-4  Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God.  Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?

Nicodemus, one of the most intelligent men who ever lived, asked Jesus Christ how a man could be born again.  This is a logical question since it is hard for any of us to mentally conceive of being physically born again as an adult.  What was Jesus’ response?

John 3:5  Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God.

He said that a man must be born of water and of the Spirit.  What in the world did he mean by that?  Does he mean that you must be born in the ocean?  Did he mean that you must be water-baptized?  How can we ever figure the answer out?  As God is not the author of confusion (1 Cor 14;33) the answer is not that hard to find.  Read on to the next verse.

John 3:6  That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

God clarifies John 3:5 with the wording of John 3:6.  The Water and Spirit of John 3:5 are the same as the Flesh and Spirit of John 3:6.  When Jesus said that you must be born of the water, he was speaking of your literal, physical birth (i.e. when a woman’s water breaks…).  However, before you think you can make an easy escape through allegory, the Spirit of verse 5 is still the Spirit of verse 6.  This means that regardless of which verse you choose:  you still must be born again (of the Spirit).

John 3:7-8:  Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.  The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.

This is the consistent testimony of all people who have been born again.  Literally, the Spirit of God hits you like a freight train.  One moment you are wallowing in your sin, and the next moment you have had a lightening-bolt realization that you are in dire need of a savior.  If this freight train hasn’t hit you, it’s because you haven’t allowed it to.  You’ve been so busy bobbing and weaving to avoid the truth that you are literally running from God who created you and loves you.  Like the backsliding heifer, you refuse to hear  (Zechariah 7:11)

John 3:9-10:  Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be?  Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?

You, like Nicodemus and every other unsaved person, are probably incredulous by now.  How can this be?”, you ask.  Jesus’ response to both Nicodemus and all readers cuts straight through our egos.  Are you not a self-proclaimed genius?  Are you not smarter than the rest?  Are you not modern?  Are you not living in the 21st Century?  Do you not have access to computers, television, phones, and the internet?  Have you not navigated the earth, sea, and skies?  And yet with all this knowledge, you still ask such a question as basic as:  “how can these things be?”

John 3:11-12  Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness. If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?

Jesus cuts straight to the chase.  He has told you (and Nicodemus) what he knows to be true and what has been seen, yet you do not believe him.  He then asks you a rhetorical question:  If you do not believe the miracles, signs, and wonders conducted in our physical reality which he has told you about, how can you possibly expect to believe the unseen things of heaven?  This is a logical predicament that most “pew-warmers” find themselves in.  They go through the motions of their vain traditions (Matthew 6:7Romans 1:21) but they find themselves no more enlightened about the things of God than when they started.  Their problem lies not in the complexity of God’s word, but in themselves.  If they cannot believe the physical miracles of the Bible (The 6-24-hour-day Creation, Garden of Eden, Noah’s Flood, Joshua’s Long Day, Jesus’ walking on water, etc.), they cannot logically expect to believe that Jesus Christ is Lord or that He died for OUR sins.

John 3:13-15  And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

Here, Jesus tells us something that only God knows.  First, until Jesus descended from heaven, no man had (or was going to) ascend up on his own as that is a power reserved for God alone.  Second, Jesus explains to us how the Old Testament examples fit the New Testament prophecies: Jesus must be crucified (lifted up on the cross) and also lifted up into Heaven.  Third, Jesus tells us why He must be lifted up:  So that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.  DID YOU READ THAT!!!  Do you remember how 1 Peter 1:23 tells us that we’ll be born again by the word of God?  Well, you just read the crux of the matter!  In fact, God wants you to know the truth so he repeats it in the next verse to try and get it into your hard heart.

John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

It only took 13 verses, but we’re here!  We are to the most famous (and important) verse in the Bible.  Yes, you read that correctly.  If you take anything from this message, please put John 3:16 to memory.  God LOVES the world.  He loves you.  He loves everyone.  In fact, he loves you so much that he gave the life of His only begotten Son to save us all.  He doesn’t require any actions or works on your part in return.  You don’t have to be good.  You don’t have to give to the poor.  You don’t have to be sinless.  All God asks is that you believe.  Did you hear me?  You only have to Believe.  It’s that simple (but not that easy).  Just Believe on your Creator, Lord, and Savior, Jesus Christ and you will have everlasting life.

“Hold on,” you say.  I believe in Jesus. In fact, everybody believes in Jesus.  All of history attests to the fact that Jesus walked this Earth 2,000 years ago.  Does that mean we are all going to Heaven?  No.  Simply believing that Jesus was a historical figure is not to believe in him unto salvation.  If you believe in Jesus in the same way that you believe in Julius Caesar, Genghis Khan, or George Washington, then you are not going to have everlasting life.  You are not trusting in Jesus; you are just acknowledging his existence.  1 Peter 3:21 clarifies for us that what saves us is the answer of a good conscience toward God, not a mere intellectual exercise.  Romans 10:9 tells us that we can’t merely mouth the words “I believe” like a Harry Potter magic spell, we must believe it in our hearts: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”

John 3:17  For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

Do you think God is unjust in his methodology of salvation?  Jesus pre-empts your unbelieving mind in verse 17 by informing you that he did not send his Son to die in order to condemn the multitudes that are willingly going to go to Hell.  Hell was not intended for you. It was intended for the Devil and his fallen angels (Matthew 25:41).  You don’t have to go there, but if you do, it is your choice.  God sent his Son to die in order that all of us (that is the world), might be saved.

John 3:18  He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

Acts 2:37  “Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?”  Is your heart pricked yet?  God made it plain as day in verse 18.  A sinner who believes is not condemned.  It does not matter if you are a murderer, fornicator, or thief.  If you believe, you will not be condemned.  Now comes the tough part.  Conversely, there is only 1 sin that will condemn us.  That sin is unbelief.  It doesn’t matter how good of a person you think you are:  If you do not believe in the name of Jesus Christ, you are condemned and on your way to Hell.

John 3:19-21  And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.

Jesus now throws the gauntlet on the table.  He puts it about as bluntly as it can be put.  The reason you do not believe is because you love darkness as it covers up your evil deeds.  You may be able to hide those deeds from men, but you cannot hide them from God.  We are told in Matthew 10:26:  “…for there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known.”

You must now ask yourself: “Do I love darkness (and evil), or do I love the light (and truth)?” The Bible tells us that you have a choice in this matter.  We are not robots, automatons, or wooden toys like Pinocchio.  Proverbs 16:9 tells about our choice:  The broad way to Hell (Matthew 7:13) or the narrow way (Matthew 7:14) to Heaven.  Either you choose to believe in Jesus Christ, or you choose to reject Jesus Christ.  It is that simple.  Ye must be born again.

I pray that both your conscience and your heart have been pricked.  I pray that you have been convicted to the point of 2 Corinthians 7:10:  “For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.”  Please, for the sake of your soul, repent of your unbelief and believe on our Lord Jesus Christ so that you too can be born again.  While we will probably never meet in this life, I hope to see you in Heaven.