The report has done a good job in finding out the church is saturated by people who are not truly regenerated, saved, born again believers.
FIRST let’s look into this term "born again." Another word for "born again" I used in the last sentence. You could add to your terminology about one who has been saved is regeneration.
The idea here is to say this: Can we ascribe the Barna Group term "born again" as the kind of "born again" as the Scriptures use the term?
Of course all of us have heard a number of people being "born again" in the wrong sense. Billie Jean King has been "born again,’ describing her new knee surgery. The west end of Portsmouth, Ohio has been born again.
But what did the Scriptures intend when they used the term "born again?"
What I would like to do is show just how glorious being born again really is. I want to show what really happens to those who have been saved, born again. and to show that it’s not man’s work that brings about the new birth. We do not make it happen. God makes it happen. It happens to us, not by us.
- But it always happens through the preaching of the Word of God. 1 Peter 1:23.
- BEING BORN AGAIN TAKES PLACE THROUGH THE GOSPEL 1 Peter 1:23.
If I ever tried to bring anything to the folks I preached to for twenty years it was to teach them what happens when one becomes born again.
- When you are truly saved, regenerated, born again, in the grace and knowledge of what the Lord has done for you, your fellowship with God will be pleasing and your assurance that He is your Heavenly Father will be rich.
- The church of the Lord Jesus Christ will be better when we see the real deal of radical love and sacrifice and courage from the church and not all these counterfeit Christian that live just like the world.
- If you know what really happens to you in your salvation, you will appreciate God and His Spirit and His Son and His Word more exceedingly than you ever have. And He will be glorified.
If I ever had a theme while preaching it was showing people what happens when there occurs salvation, a new birth. If you want to know what a counterfeit dollar looks like, know what a real dollar looks like.
So how does God’s act of regeneration work itself out? What are the effects of being born again?
What changes? What is it like to live as a born-again person?
WHAT TAKE PLACE IN THE NEW BIRTH
- Jesus didn’t have kind words about the religious Jewish leaders the Pharisees. Matthew 23:15 and 33. Eternity hangs in the balance when we are talking about this idea of being born again. "Unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God".
"Jesus said to Nicodemus in John 3:3 "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God" Here is what this mean: We will not be saved; we will not be apart of God’s family, and not go to heaven, but instead will go to hell, when we are not born again.
- Lordship salvation is confronting. When Jesus taught about this new birth He was confronting us with our despairing spiritual and moral and legal condition apart from God’s regeneration grace. Before we are born again. We are born again because first, we were spiritually dead. Secondly we were morally self-centered and defiant. Thirdly we were legally guilty before God’s law and under His wrath.
You tell a person: "Jesus said you must be born again if you are going to see the kingdom of heaven, and you are unresponsive, corrupt, and guilty." That is rather comforting, wouldn’t you say. Quite unsettling.
- And in reality we can’t do anything about this condition that all men have. It’s not something we can do ourselves but something that is done to us. John 1:13 "who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God". And Peter says the same, "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to HIS great mercy, He has caused us to be born again." I Peter 1:3. We do not produce in us this new birth. Here it is: God causes the new birth.