- Having been saved, means you have been given new life, and that life is Jesus Christ. And Jesus said, "It is the Spirit who gives life." John 6:63. So the work of the Holy Spirit in us is known as "regeneration". The Spirit is to impart new life to us by joining us to Christ.
- How does this happen? We made the connection by faith. John 20:31 "These are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name." In other words faith connects us with Christ.
A NEW HUMAN NATURE
- We are connected with Christ, we are united with Jesus by faith. Now this new birth is not an improvement of our old human nature. There is an extreme makeover, that is the old nature is torn down We are given a new human nature. The old nature is not made over. The now indwelling Holy Spirit is forming in you a new spiritual nature.
- For those born again by the spirit there has been a new spirit put within them. They have been given a new clean heart and a new spirit.
This is why there is to be this continuity of cleansing. The old human being was not obliterated, in the new birth, sorry to say. If that had been true, the whole idea of forgiveness and cleansing would be irrelevant. There would be nothing left over as it were from the past to forgive or cleanse.
From Romans 6:6 we are told that our old self was crucified, and that we have died with Christ in Colossians 3:3 and we are to reckon ourselves dead in Romans 6:11 and "put off the old self" in Ephesians 4:22. But all these things mean the same human being is not in view throughout life. It means that there was an old nature, an old character, or principle, or bent as it were, that needs to be done away with. Paul said I daily beat my body into subjection.
From the human standpoint we are still human, we are still fleshly, we still need to be forgiven and cleansed. Jeremiah 3:8 put it this way, "I will cleanse them from all the guilt of their sin against me, and I will forgive all the guilt of their sin and rebellion against me."
In a sense we are still the person we have always been, and still daily need forgiven. I John 1:9 tells us that.
Yet forgiveness and cleansing is not enough. We need to be new. We need to be transformed. We need life. We need a new way of seeing and thinking and appraising. That is why Ezekiel says "I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit, I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And here is the point, "And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules." I call this, or John MacArthur does, "Lordship Salvation."
Ezekiel profoundly proclaims the doctrines of conversion and spiritual life. The heart of stone means the dead heart that was cold-hearted and unresponsive to spiritual reality. It’s true that before you got a new heart, you did have feeling. It could respond with passion and desire for a lot of things. But the heart was cold toward the spiritual truth and the wonderful ideas of Jesus Christ and the glory of God and the path of holiness. And that is what has to change if we are going to see the kingdom of Heaven.
So there is a conversion of the old heart, a new birth. God takes out the heart of stone and puts in a heart of flesh. That is, "flesh" means pliable and living and responsive and feeling, instead of being a lifeless rock.
In the New Birth, our dead, lifeless, dull, boredom with Christ is exchanged by a heart that feels in the spiritual sense the worth of Jesus Christ as Lord, and as God.
"I will put with you...." God puts a living, supernatural, spiritual life in our heart, and that new life, that new spirit, is the working of the Holy Spirit Himself giving form and character to our new heart. Praise the Lord.
Picture a person you know who was so hard toward Jesus Christ. His spirit was so dull, and really very untouchable in his heart toward anything you would say about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Then one day it seemed it was as if he had a heart transplant. He now has a warm, touchable and agreeable mind toward what you have been trying to tell him about Jesus. The Holy Spirit pushes Himself up into it and gives spiritual, moral shape to it according to His own shape. The Holy Spirit within us, in our heart and mind takes on His character His spirit. Ephesians 4:23. Amen.
- - - - - - - - - garrulous \GAIR-uh-lus; GAIR-yuh-\, adjective:
1. Talking much, especially about commonplace or trivial things; talkative.2. Wordy.
This has been twelve pages typed from Corel WordPerfect, posted in ten parts. I know its been a little wordy but I hope not trivial in its content.
Proof Checked by Charity Sunday Evening March 2 2008