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Born Again
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(John 1:12-13 KJV) "But as many as received him to them gave he power to become the sons [children] 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."

When the Word of God is received

To help understand "Born Again," which some call the "New Birth," I used John's epistles as a bases. More is said in his epistles on this particular subject, using this language than the others. One may ask, how can one be born again? John wrote, "But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons [children] of God, even to them that believe on his name" (John 1:12 KJV).

Before given power to become one of God's sons (or daughters), one must receive Him, believe on (in) His name, the Word of God (John 1:14).

(John 1:14 KJV) "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth."

When He is received (John 1:1-5, 12-14) and one is born again, an analogy can be like seed (1 Pet 1:22-25) -- the Word of God (Luke 8:11) -- that is sown, planted (1 Cor 3:6-8), received (John 1:12) and taken root in good moist (Luke 8:6) ground (Mat 13:8, 23), watered (1 Cor 3:6-8), nourished (1 Tim 4:6), growing (Eph 4:15 1), maturing (1 Cor 13:10-13) and (bearing fruit) producing (Luke 8:8, 15) in ones life. For we are "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God..." (1 Pet 1:23 KJV).

(1 Pet 1:22-25 KJV) "Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently: {23} Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever. {24} For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away: {25} But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you."

Born physically and born again

Being born again is accomplished by the will of God (John 1:12-13).

(John 1:12-13 KJV) "Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God."

When born into this world (Acts 17:28), we come without a conscious effort on our part. However, we do have a chance to become God's child; for He is the one who chooses (John 15:16 2), purges (Heb 9:22-24), washes, regenerates (Titus 3:4-6) and seals (John 6:27) the believer with the Holy Spirit of God (Eph 4:30 3), making him His child (Rom 8:14-17).

One has to be born again of water and of the Spirit to enter God's kingdom (John 3:3-8). Being born again seems to be a process in ways similar to being born physically yet different in its results.

(John 3:3-8 KJV) "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. {4} 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? {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. {6} That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. {7} Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. {8} 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."

When a child is in its mother's womb (Psa 139:13), he is in a amniotic sac and fluid, which consists of water, etc. I do not understand all there is to know about this sac and its fluid, but they must be important for protection and aid in the proper growth and development of the little unborn baby child.

(Psa 139:13 KJV) "For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother's womb."

When born physically, each person comes out of water and breaths (spirit) to be able to live in this world. But then, all will die (Heb 9:27) physically one day because of sin (Rom 5:12), which separated us from the Lord (Heb 7:26); but the born again person just passes the doors of death to be with the Lord. To help understand that, read what Paul says in 1 Corinthians 15:44 about the natural and spiritual bodies, and about being absent from this body and present with the Lord in 2 Corinthians 5:6-8.

(1 Cor 15:44 KJV) "It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body."
(2 Cor 5:6-8 KJV) "Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: {7} (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) {8} We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord."

Christ said, if one believes in Him "though he were dead, yet shall he live." He will never die (John 11:23-27).

Once born again, the new person (Eph 4:23-32) does not continue in sin, because he is born of God (1 John 3:9-10). "...And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: And he is the propitiation for our sins..." (1 John 2:1-2).

(1 John 3:9-10 KJV) "Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. {10} In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother."

Since flesh and blood (1 Cor 15:52) can not inherit the kingdom of God (Mat 12:28), there has to be a transformation (2 Cor 3:18) that has to occur in the believer and in his thinking (Rom 12:2). Each believer becomes a new creature (Gal 6:15) in Christ Jesus (2 Cor 5:17). To be able to live forever in the presence of a Holy God, his body has to be (transformed) changed (Job 14:14), fashioned like unto His glorious body (Phil 3:20-21) and put on immortality (1 Cor 15:51-54).

Baptism

I believe when most Christians consider born of water in the born again experience, water baptism comes to mind. But some who have done some research believe it could mean water baptism and/or even water by the Word (Eph 5:26). That doubt should cause a believer to search out God's Word to learn more about what Jesus was talking about.

First, I would like to mention, our Lord and Savior, the blameless Lamb of God and our example, was even water baptized. Hence, we should follow (John 10:27-28) in His steps ("Foot Prints of Jesus" Midi!). When Jesus came up out of the baptismal water, the Spirit of God descended like a dove, and lighted upon him (Mat 3:16). Is this a view of being born of water and of the Spirit?

(Mat 3:16 KJV) "And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:"

When John the Baptist was in doubt to baptize Jesus, the purpose Jesus gave was, "...Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness ..." (Mat 3:15 KJV). The Spirit of God descended upon Jesus and remained (John 1:32-34).

Dove Flying
(John 1:32-34 KJV) "And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him. {33} And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost. {34} And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God."
Jesus At Baptism

Then, according to Matthew 3:17, 4 a voice spoke from heaven saying, "...This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." Jesus was confirmed to be the Heavenly Father's beloved Son by the voice that spoke from heaven. Like Jesus, I would much rather be confirmed to be a son (child) of God by the Heavenly Father and by the Holy Spirit than by any other source.

After Jesus' resurrection, before He was received up into heaven, He appeared to eleven of His disciples and said, He that believes and is baptized will be saved (Mark 16:16). Is this baptism by water and/or is it by the Holy Ghost? Because, in another account, before He was taken up and a cloud received Him, He said, John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days from now (Acts 1:4-5), that what John the Baptist talked about before the baptism of Jesus (Mat 3:11-14). Another reason to search the Word even more.

(Mark 16:15-16 KJV) "And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. {16} He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. "
(Acts 1:4-5 KJV) "And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me. {5} For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence." 5

In our daily lives, water is an essential element: We drink it, bathe in it, etc. When a believer is baptized with water, it is "(not the putting away [removal] of the filth of the flesh" that saves although "baptize" can mean "wash" according to the Greek word baptizo (G907), which is from the word baptisma (G908), translated "baptism," "but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ" (1 Peter 3:21).

(1 Pet 3:21 KJV) "The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ."

The Word of God says baptism can save us by the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Natural water is just water in baptism until the right application (1 Pet 3:21). Paul said the following in Colossians 2:12 about baptism.

(Col 2:12 KJV) "Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead."

Without Jesus and His resurrection, water baptism would not have the eternal purpose. We are buried and risen with Him. We should be dead to sin and no longer living in sin (Rom 6:1-23).

Cleansing, washing and purging

When one truly believes in the Lord Jesus Christ, repents and acts in obedience (with an honest and good heart, Luke 8:15) to His commands and is baptized with water, I believe the Word comes alive (John 6:63) in him and the Lord baptizes him with the Holy Spirit (Ghost). He is letting Him (Heb 1:3), His word (John 15:1-3), the Word (Eph 5:25-27), which is sharper than any two-edged sword (Heb 4:12-13), and the Holy (Spirit) Ghost (1 Cor 6:11; Titus 3:4-6) do the work of cleansing, washing and purging.

(John 15:3 KJV) "Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you."

Christ gave His life for the Church so that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the Word (Eph 5:25-27). Could this be the water in born again?

(Eph 5:25-27 KJV) "Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; {26} That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, {27} That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish."

How can a word spoken be so powerful and do so much? If one understands that God is Spirit (John 4:24), and the words Jesus spoke are spirit and they are life (John 6:63).

(John 6:63 KJV) "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life."
(Heb 4:12 KJV) "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged 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."

During Jesus' ministry, He had power to rebuke the winds (Mat 8:23-27) and calm (Mark 6:47-51) the storms (Mark 4:36-41), raise the dead (John 11:1-6, 11-44), heal people (Mat 8:5-15), cast out devils (Mat 8:16-17) and more with His word. He could just speak and it was so (Gen 1:6-7 6). One can see how powerful the Word and His words are. We have a chance to receive the Word of God (John 1:12-14), the Holy Ghost (Spirit) and His power (Acts 1:8), be born again (John 3:3-8), and be made a new creature in Christ (2 Cor 5:17).

In 1 Corinthians 6:11, Paul said unto the church of God that was at Corinth (1 Cor 1:1-3), "...but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God."

In Titus 3:4-7 Paul said to Titus, "But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life."

Water and Spirit

According to John 7:37-39, the Spirit of God is like flowing rivers of living water. Is this also the water in born again?

(John 7:37-39 KJV) "In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. {38} He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. 7 {39} (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)"

To get our natural water, we can catch the rainfall, take it from a river, lake or whatever, and at best get it from deep within the earth. The deeper we drill a well, if in the right place, the better the water seems to become, and if deep enough, we could hit an artesian spring that will flow on its own.

It could be similar in knowing the LORD. The deeper we go into His Word (1 Cor 2:9-14) and acting upon it, the better we get to know Him, whereby learning more about the living water (Holy Spirit), a well (fountain) of water springing up into everlasting life (John 4:10-14 7) that will flow (John 7:37-39) and sustain us forever. This water quenches our thirst, cleanses us (Eph 5:26) and more. I depend on natural water, but now I depend on living water more than ever.

Whoever drinks of the water that Jesus gives will never thirst. When He said "...out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water" in John 7:38-39, He spoke of the Holy Spirit (Ghost).

Baptized and Filled with the Holy Ghost

John's baptism was with water unto repentance, but Jesus' baptism is with the Holy Ghost (John 1:33 5) and with fire (Mat 3:11).

(Mat 3:11 KJV) "I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:"

That which was spoken by the prophet Joel (Joel 2:28-29 8) came to pass fifty days (Acts 2:1-4) after Jesus' resurrection.

Like A Rushing Mighty Wind
(Acts 2:1-4 KJV) "And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. {2} And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. {3} And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. {4} And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance."

After Pentecost Peter began to baptize in Jesus name so others could receive the gift of the Holy Ghost (Acts 2:38).

(Acts 2:38 KJV) "Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost."

Some of John's disciples were baptized again when they heard that they should believe on Him who should come after him. According to Acts 19:4-6, for them to have the Holy Ghost (Spirit) come on them, which I believe was the baptism (Acts 1:5) and the gift of the Holy Ghost (Acts 2:38), they had to believe on Jesus Christ, be baptized with water in the name of the Lord Jesus and had hands laid on them.

(Acts 19:4-6 KJV) "Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus. {5} When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. {6} And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied."

In Luke 11:24-26 Jesus talked about a certain man with an unclean spirit. After the unclean spirit left him, the spirit came back later to find the house swept and garnished (decorated and adorned with things of the world), then taking along seven other spirits, entered again and the last state of that man was worse than the first. When we get our hearts cleansed of unclean spirits and maybe only reformed, we need to be filled (Acts 2:4) with the Holy Spirit (Luke 11:13).

(Luke 11:13 KJV)"If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?"

Jesus said He would not leave us comfortless (John 14:18). He was going to send another Comforter that would abide with us forever (John 14:16-17).

(John 14:16-17 KJV) "And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; {17} Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth 9 with you, and shall be in you."

Born of the Spirit

In those days there were no instruments to measure or forecast weather. Today man is studying atmospheric conditions associated with tornadoes and hurricanes, trying to forecast them. But winds are unpredictable. The wind is spirit in which we cannot see, but we can see the effects of it, feel it and here the sound of it. What Jesus said in John 3:6-8 helps me understand the wind and being born of the Spirit (of God).

(John 3:8 KJV) "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."

Sons of God are led of the Spirit (Rom 8:14) and no longer under the law (Gal 5:18). When the Spirit leads us to fast (Mat 4:1) or whatever, we should obey His beckoning. According to 1 John 4:6-9 and 5:1-6, we can know if we are born of God. The world may not understand our born again experience, but we do.

(1 John 4:6-9 KJV) "We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error. {7} Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. {8} He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. {9} In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him."
(1 John 5:1-6 KJV) "Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him. {2} By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments. {3} For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous. {4} For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. {5} Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God? {6} This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth."

As we get to know the Savior, we will understand more about the Three in One (1 John 5:7) we call the Holy Trinity. They do make their abode with us (John 14:23) and want us to be one (John 17:11, 19-23) as they are one.

(1 John 5:7-8 KJV) "For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. {8} And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one."

What a pleasure to be born again and an honor to be called a son of God and one of His children.

(1 John 3:1-2 KJV) "Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. {2} Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is."

Conclusion

When He is received (John 1:1-5, 12-14) and one is born again, an analogy can be like seed (1 Pet 1:22-25) -- the Word of God (Luke 8:11) -- that is sown, planted (1 Cor 3:6-8), received (John 1:12) and taken root in good moist (Luke 8:6) ground (Mat 13:8, 23), watered (1 Cor 3:6-8), nourished (1 Tim 4:6), growing (Eph 4:15 1), maturing (1 Cor 13:10-13) and (bearing fruit) producing (Luke 8:8, 15) in ones life. For we are "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God..." (1 Pet 1:23 KJV).

One has to be born again of water and of the Spirit to enter God's kingdom (John 3:3-8). Being born again seems to be a process in ways similar to being born physically yet different in its results.

Much evidence is shown what being born of the Spirit means. The Holy Ghost (Spirit) baptizes (Mark 1:8), washes, regenerates (Titus 3:4-6) and seals (Eph 4:30 3) the believer.

Being born of water seems to be explained in several ways. We are clean through the word of Jesus (John 15:1-3) and the church is cleansed with the washing of water by the Word (Eph 5:25-27). Natural water is just water in baptism until the right application (1 Pet 3:21). The water that is mentioned in John 7:37-39 represents the Holy Ghost (Spirit).

The words Jesus spoke are spirit and they are life (John 6:63). Jesus (Heb 1:3), His word (John 15:1-3), the Word (Eph 5:25-27), which is sharper than any two-edged sword (Heb 4:12-13), and the Holy (Spirit) Ghost (1 Cor 6:11; Titus 3:4-6) do the work of cleansing, washing and purging.

I do not find an end to the search of water and Spirit in the born again experience. The search in the Word takes one through a maze of interconnecting scriptures.

Some believe the new birth occurs when a person is saved. Others believe it is a process that begins when we are saved and completed when we receive our resurrected bodies (Rom 8:19-23; Col 1:18). Which ever way you look at it, once we have the Holy Spirit of God (Eph 1:13), which God gives (Luke 11:13; 1 Th 4:8), we belong to Him (Rom 8:9). We are sealed (2 Cor 1:21-22) unto the day of redemption (Eph 4:30) of our body (Rom 8:23). Some may mature early and others later, and some may go off into eternity in diapers.

(1 Pet 2:2 KJV) "As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:"

References:

1) Eph 4:15; 1 Pet 2:2; 2 Pet 3:18; 2 Th 1:3
2) Mat 12:18; 20:16; 22:14; 24:22-24, 31; Mark 13:20-22, 27; Luke 18:6-8; 23:35; John 6:70; 15:16, 19; Acts 1:2-3, 24-25; 9:15-16; 10:40-41; 15:21-22, 25-26; 22:13-14; Rom 8:33; 16:13; 1 Cor 1:26-29; Eph 1:3-6; Col 3:12; 2 Th 2:13-14; 1 Tim 5:21; 2 Tim 2:10; Titus 1:1; James 2:5; 1 Pet 1:1-2; 2:1-10; 2 John 1:1-2, 13; Rev 17:14
3) John 6:27; 2 Cor 1:21-22; Eph 1:13-14; 4:30; 2 Tim 2:19
4) Mat 3:16-17; Mark 1:9-11; Luke 3:21-22; John 1:32-34
5) Mat 3:11; Mark 1:8; Luke 3:16; John 1:26, 33; Acts 1:5; 11:16
6) Gen 1:6-7, 9-10, 11-12, 14-15, 24-25, 29-30
7) John 4:10-14; 7:37-39; Rev 7:16-17; 21:6; Rev 22:1, 17
8)
Acts 1:4-5; 2:1-4, 16-18; Joel 2:28-29
9) John 14:16-17; Rom 8:9-11; 1 Cor 3:16-17; 2 Tim 1:14

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