Welcome to Bible Answers
SALVATION QUESTION 32
What does it mean to be born again?
This was a question that puzzled a Jewish ruler named Nicodemus, His thoughts immediately went back to his natural birth and suggested that he enter the womb and be born over again.
The words “born again” literally means born from above. Our first birth is natural and from below or earth. This birth is spiritual and from above. Our first birth gives us human life, but the second gives us eternal life. It is necessary to be born to be alive, so in order to live eternally in heaven one must have eternal life. So, Jesus said, “Ye must be born again” John 3:7 the word “must” being an imperative, which means there is no exception.
There is no kind of life without a birth first. As in all births there is a seed that must germinate to produce life. So it is in being born again. Peter gives us the key in 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. James adds, "Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures." James 1:18; the word “begat” is being born again. Jesus, in the parable of the sower and the seed, says, “Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.” Luke 8:11.
Like all seeds, the word of God in the Gospel message must be conceived. Paul says of the Corinthians, “I have begotten you through the gospel.” 1 Corinthians 4:15. Once the gospel is taken in and firmly believed it germinated and produces the new birth. “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons 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." John 1:12-13.
This birth is the work of God alone. We are the recipients of the seed. “Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word God.” Romans 10:17 God has no way to giving eternal life as a gift apart from the facts that Christ died for our sins and rose again the third day. “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth” Romans 1:16, We hear, than believe and God’s power perform the new birth.
Have you been born again? Have you repented of your sins? Are you saved?
All comments and questions to: Harold Smith
Updated March 1st, 2014 by Sandra Felix