[Papercut Press] 2000-11-07 - Born Again

Part 6 - What Actually Happened? The Moment I Trusted Christ

1 John 5:4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world and this is the victory that has overcome the world -- our faith.

We come to the sixth thing that happens the moment we trusted Christ for salvation.

  1. I was Born From Above (Titus 3: 5-7)

    In the late 1980's and early 1990's the phrase "Born Again," became associated with fundamentalism of the very conservative Baptist type. This was unfortunate for two reasons. First, because the term fundamentalism had, until then, a much broader and inclusive nature which defined an adherent to its precepts as someone who believed the basic doctrines of the Gospel, the nature and atonement of Christ, and the authority of the Bible.

    The term "Born Again," is one not only used by Christ to explain conversion, but is also a very helpful term to describe the fundamental change that takes place in a person when he/she rests in Christ for salvation and forgiveness. For example, in 1 Corinthian 5:17, we find, "Therefore if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things have passed away; behold, new things have come."

    The nature of being born again, is spelled out well in the early verses of John 3. This is the story of Jesus and Nicodemus. In summary, what is said here is that there needs to be a change in the heart and life in the person effected so that their principles, actions, motivations, and dreams are new. It is as if the person is a new person, re-born. This is because of the work of the Holy Spirit in the heart of the new person. The Spirit gives us a new principle of holiness, and the person responds accordingly.

    Now the mode of the operation of the Spirit in doing this is a mystery. How the Holy Spirit enlightens, quickens, and sanctifies the souls of men and women is as difficult to understand as the causes and workings of the wind. But this implanting of new habits and a new nature, by the Spirit, is of great importance to us. It is part of the amazing plan of God to re-new and re-claim, a people, holy to Himself.

    Being born again is not a natural change. It is a supernatural change. It is a change of the essence in the person effected. This is why it is called, the new birth, resurrection, new creation, and change of heart in the Scriptures. Many have called being born again the "infusion of a new spiritual principle," in the life of the person changed. And maybe that is the best explanation of it. It is a new spiritual principle or nature that is given to us. This is why we call the grace of God, free grace. It is available to "whosoever," will come to Christ believing in His atonement for forgiveness, (John 3:16) and it is free.

    "Conversion requires an alteration of the will, and an alteration which, in the last resort, does not occur without the intervention of the supernatural." C. S. Lewis

Soli Deo Gloria,

[email Tim] brutefact@hotmail.com