In the modern day terminology, we hear the
again Christians” frequently used.
We are not sure when or who coined the specific wording “born
again Christian.” The
concept of a new birth came from Jesus Christ when He was
explaining to a man by the name of Nicodemus how a person
entered into the kingdom of God (John, chapter 3); whereas the
name Christian was given by the mouth of the Lord for those
who are His spiritual children under the new covenant.
Recorded by inspiration at Isaiah 62:2, the prophet
the Gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy
glory: and thou
shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord shall
reference in Isaiah reveals that God’s people would receive
this new name when “the Gentiles shall see thy
was only after the household of Cornelius, being Gentiles,
obeyed the gospel of Christ that the new name was given to the
this Gentile family entered into a saved state, the Apostle
Peter explained, “…Of a truth I perceive that God is
no respecter of persons: But
in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness,
is accepted with him” (Acts 10:34-35).
After they were baptized into Christ, the
new name was given. “…And
the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch” (Acts
significance of this name is also seen in the following
Acts 4:12, “Neither
is there salvation in any other:
for there is none other name under heaven given among
men, whereby we must be saved.”
Acts 26:28, “Then
Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a
1 Pet. 4:16, “Yet
if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but
let him glorify God on this behalf.”
So, the terms “born
again” and “Christian” are Biblical.
However, it is misleading to put them together.
If a person has spiritually been born again, then that
person is a Christian. No
one is a Christian who has not been born again.
Therefore, we should refrain from saying, “born
again Christians” because
no one is a Christian who has not been born again.
THE SUBJECT OF BEING BORN AGAIN WAS BROUGHT UP BY JESUS
“…a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler
of the Jews: The
same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know
that thou art a teacher come from God:
for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except
God be with him” (John 3:1-2).
Our Lord responded unto him by saying, “Verily,
verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot
see the kingdom of God” (Verse 3).
Jesus was speaking of a spiritual birth, but Nicodemus
did not understand this.
He responded by inquiring, “…How can a man be
born when he is old? Can
he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be
born?” (Verse 4).
In his confusion, he mistakenly thought that Jesus was
speaking of another physical birth.
Under the Law of Moses this man had come into covenant
fellowship with God by being physically born into the nation of
His circumcision was a seal of that fact.
IN FURTHER EXPLAINING UNTO NICODEMUS THE NEW BIRTH, JESUS
verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of the water and
of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God” (Verse
The “Spirit” of this passage has reference to the
The Holy Spirit does not act miraculously upon the
sinner’s heart to convert him.
As the third person of the Godhead, the Holy Spirit has
already provided the inspired Word that can save our soul.
James 1:21, “…receive
with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your
Acts 11:13-14, “And
he shewed us how he had seen an angel in his house, which stood
and said unto him, Send men to Joppa, and call for Simon whose
surname is Peter; Who shall tell thee words, whereby thou and
all thy house shall be saved.”
Of course, a person must obey those inspired
James 1:22, “But be ye doers of the word, and not
hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
Hebrews 5:8-9, “Though he were a Son, yet
learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being
made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all
them that obey him;”
4. The begattal of the spiritual birth is the
Word of God
James 1:18, “Of
his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should
be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.”
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.”
Luke 8:11, “Now
the parable is this: The
seed is the word of God.”
The “water” of the New Birth is the
baptism of the Great Commission.
28:18-20, “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying,
All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in
the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have
commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the
Mark 16:15-16, “And
he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the
gospel to every creature. He
that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that
believeth not shall be damned.”
The newness of life takes place when an obedient believer
is raised from the waters of baptism.
Rom. 6:3-4, “Know ye not,
that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were
baptized into his death? Therefore
we are buried with him by baptism into death:
that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the
glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of
The new creature in Christ is an obedient believer.
2 Cor. 5:17, “Therefore
if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature:
old things are passed away; behold, all things are become
MANY DO NOT UNDERSTAND THE CLOSING STATEMENT OF OUR LORD
CONCERNING THE NEW BIRTH.
John 3:7-8, “Marvel
not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
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.”
In this passage Jesus is not referring to the new birth,
or the operation of the Holy Spirit in the new birth.
Instead, our Lord is speaking of the individual who obeys
the gospel of Christ.
He said, “so is every one that is born of the
As the wind is invisible and we do not know its source,
the inner invisible part of man is a spirit.
It is that inner spirit that is born again, not the
THERE ARE PARELLEL SCRIPTURE TO THE LORD’S DISCUSSION
OF THE NEW BIRTH AS RECORDED AT JOHN 3:1-8.
5:25-28, “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also
loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might
sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
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. So
ought men to love their wives as their own bodies.
He that loveth his wife loveth himself.”
Titus 3:4-7, “But
after that the kindness and love of God our Savior 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 Savior; That being
justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the
hope of eternal life.”
following terms of these passages are equivalent to one another:
At John 3:5, the term:
“born of water,” means the same thing
as “cleanse it with the washing of water” at
Ephesians 5:26, and as “by the washing of
regeneration” at Titus 3:5.
All three of these passages are speaking of being
scripturally baptized into Christ.
Baptism is a burial in water for the remission of sins in
the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.
(Romans 6:3-4; Colossians 2:12; Acts 8:26-39; Galatians
3:26-27; Acts 2:38; Matthew 28:18-20).
And at John 3:5, the term:
“born…of the Spirit,” is equivalent
to “by the word” at Ephesians 5:26, and as “and
renewing of the Holy Ghost” at Titus 3:5.
Harmonizing these three passages of scripture:
When a penitent believer is scripturally baptized then
this is the new birth. The
work of the Holy Spirit is through the media of the inspired
Word to convict us of our sins and to reveal what we must do to
be saved (Ephesians 6:17; Hebrews 4:12; Acts 2:36-41).
The Holy Spirit does not work directly in a supernatural
way to convict the sinner of his or her sins, but rather by way
of the inspired Word.
THE KINGDOM OF GOD AND THE CHURCH OF OUR LORD ARE ONE AND
THE SAME THING.
The church is made-up of the redeemed.
The moment a person obeys the gospel of Christ he or she
obtains the remission of sins and are added to the saved, which
is the church, the spiritual kingdom of our Lord. (Acts 2:36-41,
47; Colossians 1:13-14).
The Son of God invites all mankind, who are
accountable, to come unto Him.
At Matthew 11:28-30 is His Great Invitation:
“Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy
laden, and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and
lowly in heart: and
ye shall find rest unto your souls.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
We do so when we obey His gospel (Romans 6:17-18;
1 Cor. 15:1-4; Romans 6:3-4).