(Re-post) You Must Be Born Again

Posted: October 27, 2010 by doulos tou Theou in Uncategorized

by Ray Ortlund

“You must be born again.”  John 3:7

You.  This is personal.  If I resent it as threatening, that could be evidence I have not been born again.  If my heart welcomes the approach of this truth and waves the white flag of surrender, that could be evidence I have been born again.

Must.  This is authoritative.  If I take evasive action, that could be evidence I have not been born again.  If I breathe a sigh of relief that finally Someone is telling me the truth and taking me in hand, that could be evidence I have been born again.

Be born again.  This is passive.  I need more than self-correction; I need a miracle deep within.  I need God to call into existence within me a new aliveness to God, new tastes, new desires, new openness and humility and fears and hopes, such as I have never experienced before and cannot conjure up out of my admirable upbringing and good intentions.  I need newness of Genesis 1-magnitude.  In fact, my eternal destiny hangs on something only God can do for me.

“It is a noteworthy and striking fact that no doctrine has excited such surprise in every age of the Church and has called forth so much opposition from the great and learned as this very doctrine of the new birth.  The men of the present day who sneer at conversions and revivals as fanaticism are no better than Nicodemus.  Like him, they expose their own entire ignorance of the work of the Holy Spirit.”

J. C. Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospels: John 1:1-10:9 (Grand Rapids, n.d.), page 139.  Style updated.

You must be born again is a post from: Ray Ortlund

About these ads
Comments
  1. “Have you been born again?” the Fundamentalist at the door asks the unsuspecting Catholic.

    Yes, they believe in Jesus. And yes, they try to live Christian lives. They probably have some vague awareness that Fundamentalists think being “born again” involves a religious experience or “accepting Jesus as your personal Lord and Savoir.”

    The Catholic Church has always held, being “born of water and the Spirit” refers to baptism, and then it follows that being “born again” or “born from above” means being baptized.

    Clearly, the context implies that born of “water and the Spirit” refers to baptism. The Evangelist tells us that immediately after talking with Nicodemus, Jesus took his disciples into the wilderness where they baptized people (John 3:22).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s