WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO REALLY BE BORN-AGAIN?

The term "Born Again" is one of the most used phrases among
present day religious people. Yet, if asked what the term "Born
Again" means, ninety percent of the world's church members could
not give a clear explanation.

The vital importance of this study is shown in that Jesus said,
"Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God"
(John 3:3). Here Jesus is saying that TO BE BORN AGAIN IS TO
BE SAVED. Being born again is the plan of salvation that Jesus
authored at Calvary. It is imperative that we understand what is
required for us to be born again!


All agree that when Jesus went to the cross, he brought in the means
of salvation for everyone who will accept it. But what really
happened at Calvary? What can it do for me? How do I accept what
was done there in my own personal life?!

Let us first consider what really happened at Calvary. There were
three steps to the work of Christ to see that these three steps make
up the act of being born again spoken of by Jesus. To die, to be
buried, and to rise again So we see that Jesus through his death,
burial, and resurrection bought for us the plan of being born again
spoken of in John 3:3, whereby we receive salvation.

The fact that Jesus purchased a plan of salvation for us is the
greatest news the world has ever received. The thing we must
understand is that not only was it necessary for Jesus to do
something, but also it is absolutely essential for us to act upon what
he did. Jesus told Nicodemus, "Ye MUST be born again" (John
3:7).

Now the astonishing thing is that Nicodemus was a religious leader
of his day; yet, he had no conception of what it meant to be born
again! We find that the very same thing is true in the day in which
we live. Many men who fill positions of spiritual leadership in our
world have no real understanding of the "Born Again" experience.
Nicodemus inquired of Jesus in John 3:4, "How can a man be born
when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's
womb, and be born?" 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." Nicodemus, you can't be born
again of a woman. The second birth is a spiritual birth.

Notice that Jesus said without being born again we cannot see or
enter the kingdom of God. In other words, we cannot be saved. On


the day of Pentecost when Peter preached the first message after
Calvary, the men cried out, "What must we do?" "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" (Acts 2:38). Here Peter was giving to them the plan
of salvation repentance,baptism and the infilling of the Holy Ghost.
If being born again is to be saved, Peter was evidently talking to
them about being born again.


Remember, there were three steps to Calvary The way to accept
Calvary in our individual life is to accept the death,burial, and
resurrection of Christ.

We don't have to literally die,literally be buried, and literally rise
again. Jesus was our substitute and did this for us. All we must do is
accept what he did by spiritually dying, symbolically being buried,
and spiritually rising again.

We take on his death by repentance which is spiritual death. When a
person truly repents, he dies out to his own will, renounces it
forever, and vows to live from that time on according to the will of
Jesus Christ.

We take on his burial by baptism in water, by immersion into His
name.

Romans 6:4 says, "Therefore we are buried with him by baptism".
Baptism MUST be done by immersion; for something cannot be
buried by sprinkling a little dirt on the top of it. That burial after a
few days would certainly prove to be insufficient! Furthermore,
EVERY baptism of which we have Biblical record was
administered by immersion. That alone should determine our course
of action on this matter.

Finally, we partake of the resurrection of Jesus Christ by the
infilling of the Holy Ghost. This is the new life that enables us to
live as a Christian should.

We see then that being born again means to spiritually die
symbolically be buried. Thus, in plain language an individual must
repent of his sins, be baptized into the name of Jesus Christ by
immersion, and receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. IJohn 5:8 tells
us, "And there are three that bear witness in the earth, the Spirit, and
the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one." What is the
one thing in which the spirit, water, and blood agree? Is it not the
new birth? Blood covers our sins at repentance; the waters of
baptism wash them away, thus making us clean for the spirit to
come into our lives to dwell. When the Roman soldiers thrust the
spear into Jesus' side after he died, the scripture tells us that there
came forth blood and water (John 19:34). This was for cleansing of
the nations. It takes blood and water to eradicate sin. Blood is the
cleansing agent, and water is the flushing agent. When a jar is


washed for canning, soap AND water are necessary to cleanse that
jar so that it might be filled with good fruit. Likewise, blood and
water are necessary to cleanse the human soul so that it may receive
the spirit of Christ which is the Holy Ghost. This teaching was
verified by Peter when he said, "Repent and be baptized FOR the
REMISSION of SINS" (Acts 2:38). Repentance and baptism are
both absolutely essential for the remission of sins!

Paul taught that the three steps of Calvary was the gospel that we
should preach. In I Corinthians 15:1-4 he tells us, "Moreover,
brethren, I declare unto you the GOSPEL which I preached unto
you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which
also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I have preached unto
you, unless ye have BELIEVED IN VAIN. For I delivered unto you
first of all that which I also received, how that Christ DIED for our
sins according to the scriptures; And that he was BURIED, and that
he ROSE AGAIN the third day according to the scriptures:". Paul
went on the say in II Thessalonians 1:7-8, "And to you who are
troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from
heaven with his mighty angels. In flaming fire taking vengeance on
them that know not God, and that OBEY NOT THE GOSPEL of
our Lord Jesus Christ." Paul told us that the gospel is the death,
burial, and resurrection of Christ. How can we OBEY the death,
burial, and resurrection as we have previously explained? Notice
that the Lord Jesus is to appear "in flaming fire taking vengeance on
them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel." It is
absolutely necessary for every human being to obey the gospel by
being BORN AGAIN. Jesus told Nicodemus, "Ye MUST be BORN
AGAIN" (John 3:7).

Old Testament Speaks Of Born Again Plan.

Let us consider another Biblical lesson given to us concerning this
subject.

The Bible teaches us that the things of the Old Testament were
types and shadows of the things to come. When the priests of the
law ministered by offering sacrifices, there were three major steps
to their duties.

First they slew the animal to be offered on the brazen altar. The
blood here was shed and caught in a container for use in the Holy
Place. The flesh of the animal was to be consumed by fire. This
teaches us of the first step of salvation sacrifice, and our sins are
covered by the blood of Jesus.

After the shedding of blood, the priests were ordered to wash at the
laver and to cleanse themselves with water in preparation for
entering the Holy Place. The laver, a round fountain-like structure,
was overlaid in the bottom with a looking glass. When the priests
bent over to wash, he was able to see himself so that he could be
sure that he was clean. When an individual is baptized, he should


examine himself to be sure that he is leaving the world behind once
and for all. We see then that the second step of the tabernacle
ministration plainly teaches us of water baptism. Blood and water
cleansed them to prepare them for entry into the Holy Place, even as
blood and water cleanses us in preparation of receiving the Holy
One into our lives! After cleansing, the priest would then take the
fire from off of the brazen altar and would enter through the veil
into the Holy Place. The Holy Place had no doors or windows
through which light could come. The only light to be provided here
was to come from the golden candlesticks. These candlesticks
consisted of seven wicks fed by oil from seven bowls. The wicks
had to be lit with the fire brought by the priest from the brazen altar.
The uniting at the candlesticks of the oil and fire to produce light is
a perfect type of the Holy Ghost and fire promised to New
Testament believers (Matthew 3:11). Without the light of the Holy
Ghost, we could not see to live in the Holy Place which is where
every Christian should live. God spoke of His great plan of
redemption in the Old Testament in types and shadows; and then in
the New Testament He spoke plainly to us so that we would have
no doubt of His will! Once again we recall the words of 1 John 5:8,
"There are three that bear witness in the earth, the SPIRIT, the
WATER, and the BLOOD; and these three agree in one". This Old
Testament lesson beautifully reaffirms to us the absolute necessity
of the full Born Again plan in each life for salvation!

Some Common Misconceptions.

Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ

Acts 16:30-31 reads this way, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?"
And they said, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be
saved, and thy house." Many have taken this scripture to teach that
all that is required for salvation is to believe that Jesus Christ is the
Savior of the world; and from that point on, the individual is saved.
It is definitely true that an individual must believe that Jesus is the
Savior in order to be saved.

However, Paul, who spoke these words in Acts 16, has some further
teaching on the subject in Romans 10:13-15. Let's consider the text:
"For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
How then shall they call on him OF WHOM they have not heard?
and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they
preach, except they be sent?" If we wanted to be absurd, we could
take this thirteenth verse to teach that all an individual must do for
salvation is to call out the name of Jesus one time and he has
received salvation. Paul tells us they can't call on him in whom they
have not believed. Furthermore, he said that they can't believe in
him OF WHOM they have not heard. We cannot merely believe.
We must believe SOMETHING about Christ. When Paul told the
jailer in Acts 16 to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, he went on to
speak unto him the word of the Lord (verse 32). The word which
Paul spake was apparently the GOSPEL; for the result in verse 33


was that the jailer and all his house were baptized at midnight.
That's how essential baptism is for salvation. Paul took all these
people out AT MIDNIGHT and baptized them!

Some would object here by saying that we are saved by faith alone.
It is true that we are saved by faith, but it is also true that true faith
always produces action on the part of the believer. Let's study from
James 2:14-22 to verify this point.

"What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith,
and have not works? can faith save him? If a brother or a sister be
naked, and destitute of daily food, And one of you say unto them,
Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give
them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it
profit? Even so faith if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. Yea,
a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works; shew me thy
faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.
Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also
believe, and tremble. But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith
without works IS DEAD? Was not Abraham our father justified by
works when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thus
how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made
perfect?"

When an individual believes on the Lord Jesus Christ, what do they
believe about him? They believe the gospel, which is the death,
burial, and resurrection (I Corinthians 15:1-4). James teaches us that
faith without action is dead, or it is not really faith at all. When a
sinner hears the true gospel and truly believes, he will obey the
gospel. An individual obeys the death, burial, and resurrection of
Christ by repentance, baptism, in Jesus' name, and the infilling of
the Holy Ghost, evidenced by speaking with other tongues. (Write
for our free booklet "Tongues - Devilish or Divine"). This is the
salvation of Calvary! "Seest thou how faith wrought with his works,
and by works was faith made perfect?" (or complete).

If you are still having trouble conceding to this teaching because of
the element of works involved, let's reason concerning one more
point. Being born again is not considered by God to be a work. In
Titus 3:5 we are taught, "Not by works of righteousness which we
have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing
of regeneration, and the renewing of the Holy Ghost;". This
scripture tells us that regeneration which is being born again is NOT
a work of righteousness.

Concluding this matter, we will cite a familiar Biblical example. In
the great revival at Samaria in Acts 8:5-23, a sorcerer named Simon
heard the preaching of Philip. He believed and was baptized and
continued with Philip beholding the signs and miracles which were
done. Many people would say that because Simon believed, he was
saved. Yet the Apostle Peter said of him in Acts 8:23, "For I
perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of


iniquity."

It is impossible for anyone in the bond of iniquity to be saved; for
the scriptures tell us, "if the Son therefore shall make you free, ye
shall be free indeed" (John 8:36). Simon believed and was baptized,
but he had not received the Holy Ghost; therefore, he was not born
again. We cannot be half-born and survive. The entire work of
Calvary is necessary for our salvation.

The thief on the cross.

Many have asked, "If an individual must repent, be baptized, and
receive the Holy Ghost for salvation, how was the thief on the cross
with Jesus saved?"

(Luke 23:38-43). First of all, it was impossible for anyone to be
born again at this time, for the born again plan was not yet
complete. Jesus had not died, been buried, and risen again. God has
always had a plan of salvation for each dispensation of time. In
Noah's day the only way of salvation was to get in the ark. In
Moses' day the only plan was the law. In the church dispensation,
the only way to be saved is to be born again. Jesus told Nicodemus,
"Ye MUST be Born Again."

Conclusion

May we point out as we conclude this study that we have been
given the first church and the Apostles after which to pattern our
teaching and practices.

In each recorded account of conversions under the Apostles'
ministries, the three steps of being born again are evident. In Acts
2:38, it was repentance, baptism, and the Holy Ghost. In Acts 8:12,
Acts 10:44-48, and Acts 19:1-6, we find the born again experience
taught and received. Why should we vary from this practice when
we are to be built on the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets,
Jesus Christ himself being the chief cornerstone?

Do not allow anything to turn you aside from this truth AGAIN. If
you haven't as yet, you should do so TODAY!

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That is not what is written. You are interpreting what is written Sister Harris.
Pat Harris: You wrote it for yourself why don't you obey?
Read it for yourself: You said people misinterpret the word of God. Well why don't you believe the word of God for what it says and let it interpret itself!

You said :Baptism cannot forgive our sins and you even quoted the scripture Acts 2:38be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins,

What does it say?

be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins,

Why are you misinterpreting scripture?
wow you need to pray for the Holy Ghost to open your understanding sis harris your way off
Can you show me any where in the bible where the titles Father ,Son ,Holy Ghost was used when a person was baptized in the New Testament?
Thanks,Love In Christ, Della Morton


Matthew 28:19-20, Jesus commanded in His own words . . . ."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 world. Amen."

I would think that Jesus' own words shown here would suffice, even though there are no specific scriptures showing where any of the apostles baptize as instructed here; however, it would be safe to assume that they followed this commandment as given.

Peace in Jesus
Yes The Apostles fulfilled the commandment of Matthew 28:19 by obeying it. They didn't repeat what Jesus said in Matthew 28:19. For they knew the Name that which no man can have salvation with out it. Acts 4:12

God Bless.
Yes The Apostles fulfilled the commandment of Matthew 28:19 by obeying it. They didn't repeat what Jesus said in Matthew 28:19. For they knew the Name that which no man can have salvation with out it. Acts 4:12

Your statement is contradictory. How is it that the Apostles fulfilled the commandment by obeying and at the same time that did not repeat what Jesus commanded? This makes no sense.
Your statement is contradictory. How is it that the Apostles fulfilled the commandment by obeying and at the same time that did not repeat what Jesus commanded? This makes no sense.

Matthew 28:19

"Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost" (Matthew 28:19).

In this passage, Jesus commanded His disciples to baptize "in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost." However, this verse of Scripture does not teach that Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are three separate persons. Rather, it teaches the titles of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost identify one name and therefore one being. The verse expressly says "in the name,"Singular and not "in the names.".plural

Jehovah or Yahweh was the revealed name of God in the Old Testament, but Jesus is the revealed name of God in the New Testament. However, the name Jesus includes Jehovah since Jesus means Jehovah-Savior.

Father, Son, and Holy Ghost all describe the one God, so the phrase in Matthew 28:19 simply describes the one name of the one God. The Old Testament promised that there would come a time when Jehovah would have one name and that this one name would be made known (Zechariah 14:9; Isaiah 52:6). We know that the one name of Matthew 28:19 is Jesus, for Jesus is the name of the Father (John 5:43; Hebrews 1:4), the Son (Matthew 1:21), and the Holy Ghost (John 14:26). The New Testament church understood this to be so, for they baptized in the name of Jesus Christ (Acts 2:38; 8:16; 10:48; 19:5; I Corinthians 1:13). Matthew himself endorsed this interpretation by standing with Peter and the other apostles during the sermon in which Peter commanded the people to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ (Acts 2:14-38). So are you implying they repeated the very words "WE Baptize you in the Name Of the Father,son,Holy Ghost over the sinner when they were baptized? So If you would rather take Jesus words only and ignore what The Apostles taught to be saved than why not throw away the rest of the New testament(because it was written by them.
Ms. Della,

God does not wear titles. The Father, Son and Holy Ghost are 3 distinct persons in one, and that one is God.

The concept of the Trinity concerns the administration, management and actions of the persons. For the Father this includes the works of electing (1 Pet. 1:2), loving the world (John 3:16), and giving good gifts (James 1:17). For the Son it emphasizes His suffering (Mark 8:31), redeeming (1 Pet. 1:18), and upholding all things (Heb. 1:3). For the Holy Spirit is focused on His particular works of regenerating (Titus 3:5), energizing (Act 1:8), and sanctifying (Gal. 5:22-23).

Here is a common example in the attempt to picture the Godhead as one, yet showing each Person as God and also distinct.

Water may serve as a "three-in-one" illustration since it retains its chemical activity whether in solid, gas, or liquid state. There is also a triple point for water, a condition under which ice cream, and liquid water can coexist in equilibrium. All are water, yet distinct from each other.

The sun, its light, and its power may help illustrate the Trinity. No one has actually seen the sun, just as no one has seen the Father. Yet we learn a great deal about the sun by studying the sunlight, just as we learn about the Father through Jesus Christ the Son who is the radiance of His glory (Heb. 1:3). We see the power of the sun as it is involved in the growth of seeds and trees and plants, and when asked what makes things grow, we say the sun does. The Holy Spirit is like the power of the sun, and He is God.

To say the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are titles is a gross error.
The only verse of Scripture that anyone could appeal to in support of a threefold baptismal formula is Matthew 28:19, in which Jesus commanded baptism "in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost." The word name in this verse is singular, however, indicating that the phrase describes on supreme name by which the one God is revealed, not three names of three distinct persons.

The apostles understood Christ's words as a description of His own name, for they fulfilled His command by baptizing in the name of Jesus. There is only one God (Deuteronomy 6:4), and He has one supreme name today (Zechariah 14:9). Jesus is the incarnation of all the fulness of the Godhead (Colossians 2:9). Jesus is the name of the Son (Matthew 1:21), Jesus is the name by which the Father is revealed to us (John 5:43; 10:30; 14:9-11), and Jesus is the name in which the Holy Spirit comes (John 14:16-18, 26).

Luke 24:47 is a parallel verse to Matthew 28:19, and describes Jesus as saying that repentance and remission of sins-and baptism is for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38)-would be preached "in his name." Jesus is the only saving name, the name in which we receive remission of sins, the highest name made known to us, and the name which we are to say and do all things (Acts 4:12; 10:43; Philippians 2:9-11; Colossians 3:17).

Thus the one supreme, saving name of Matthew 28:19 is Jesus. We are to fulfill the command of that verse as the early church did, by invoking the name of Jesus at baptism.
The Father, Son and Holy Ghost is the nature of God Himself, not 3 separate individuals. When the term "person" is used, it is to state that God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit is a person - not an it or thing.
Chaplain Harris, I feel your pain. But hang in there. You're nailing it. Your words are both sound and reasonable. But be careful. There is much controversy regarding this subject matter. Senseless it is to me. What we all think we know is irrelavent. What the scripture says hold water. The truth is in what is written as I can see you very well know. When dealing with this subject, one should check his emotions at the door. Some say Jesus Name only, and some say Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. I say big deal! We may not all agree on all points, nevertheless the gospel is preached. I am still your brother. I write not these words to take sides in this discussion, but I do often say, If Jesus said it, It's good enough for me; or if the apostles performed it it's good enough for me. They are the same thing. You are very brave to enter this discussion. Della Morton is a true born again christian, she have strong convictions about this subject as do others. The teaching that she express is her daily diet. This is what she eats. This is what keeps her. You on the other hand have tasted her words and are able to digest them as well, but your appetite for the divine nature and spiritual understanding is greater. She on the other hand will not digest your words. Doubtful it is that she will ever see it from your perspective. I have no problem with baptizing in Jesus Name. He is my Lord after all, and doing so is not incorrect. I do it for the protection of those who I baptize, because I know that there are those out there who would injure their faith in a very real relationship they have with Christ with the beginning of a simple question: "How were you baptized?" I just as soon they skip all that. It is odd that people who baptize the way Jesus commanded with His own mouth do not criticize the holy thing done by those who follow the appostles "recorded" actions. I just want to encourage you Chaplain to hang in there. You speak the truth. I also want Sister Della to know as she full well does, baptizing in Jesus Name is right to do. It is all the same. I am sorry that she cannot see any farther than this doctrine. I would encourage her to dig deeper. Once upon a time the religious leaders of the world deemed Jesus a heretic and a blasphemer because he healed people on the Sabbath. They did not understand that when he did this, He was in fact keeping the Sabbath. Their doctrine condemned Him. Are we not doing the same thing when we judge one for using one commandment versus another? They thought Jesus a wicked man because He told a man, Thy sins be forgiven thee. They judged Him to be a blasphemer and a breaker of the Law, but he was instead an upholder of the Law. He responded, Tis as easy to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee as to say, arise take up your bed and walk. But so that you may know that it is given to the Son of man to forgive sins, Arise take up your bed and walk. I say also, It is as easy to say I Baptize you in the Name of The Father, The Son, and The Holy Ghost as it is to say I baptize you in the Name of Jesus. Two different words, same meaning. It is not wise to be so dogmatic about the scripture. It is very hard to fill a cup that is already full.
If you all want to follow man -made traditions and not sound doctrine that's between you and God.
But as for me I was baptized the correct biblical way. In Jesus Name.
If you have a moment please view this video. God bless you in Jesus name!

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