Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God. ~ John 3:3 (ESV)
READING: John 3:1-8
This is probably a familiar saying: God has no grandchildren. Physical life is passed on when we have children; they grow up, marry, and have children – our grandchildren. But spiritual life from God doesn’t work that way. Spiritual life isn’t automatically passed on when God’s spiritual children have physical babies. You can be born again, but your children may not be.
Jesus revealed to Nicodemus why God has no grandchildren. If they are ever to see heaven, all people need an inner change that is impossible for them to make: “You cannot see the kingdom of God (v. 3).” “You cannot enter the kingdom of God (v. 5).”
Maybe you have heard preachers describe “three steps to being born again.” But no one can engineer their own birth. And even more impossible, people don’t produce their own spiritual life. New birth is not within their control.
It is right to command that sinners repent and believe, but wrong to think that becoming a Christian is just about praying a prayer or making a decision, as if it was all a matter within the sinner’s control.
As Paul said: “But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised” (I Cor. 2:14).
How can any “natural man” repent and believe in Christ? Answer: he cannot, on his own. Cannot. Every converted soul is a miracle of God. The Spirit of God must do a work within each one to make that person a new child of God. Not a grandchild.
Thank You, Father, for the miracle of the new birth. Please work this miracle in great abundance in this community. Amen.
Dynamic Church Planting International (DCPI) “Equips Leaders to Plant 5 Million Churches Worldwide.” Learn more