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  • David Bent

Born of the Spirit (29-07-22)

Pause for thought

Lift up your heads, you gates;

be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in.

Who is this King of glory?

The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle.

Lift up your heads, you gates;

lift them up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in.

Who is he, this King of glory?

The Lord Almighty, he is the King of glory.

(Psalms 24:6-10)


Bible Reading: John 3:6-8

How can someone be born when they are old? Nicodemus asked.

Surely they cannot enter a second time into their mother's womb to be born!"

Jesus answered, "Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God

unless they are born of water and the Spirit.

Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit.

You should not be surprised at my saying, 'You must be born again.'

The wind blows wherever it pleases.

You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going.

So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.


A Reflection:

If you had been Nicodemus, I wonder how you would have responded to Jesus’ words, ‘You must be born again.’ I think, like Nicodemus, I would have been confused. Jesus, it seems, likes to give oblique answers to questions, not as a politician to avoid giving a straight answer, but more as a way of getting his listeners to think.


What does the term ‘Born Again’ mean to you? Maybe it’s American televangelists, or maybe it’s ‘Happy-Clappy’ Christians (a strange term since I’m pretty certain God wants us to be happy, and there is plenty of clapping in biblical worship.) Or maybe your view is more positive, after all, it was Jesus who said, ‘You must be born again’.


Some people imply that if you are not ‘Born Again’, you are not a Christian. I would suggest that all Christians are, by definition ‘Born Again’, whether or not they would use that term for themselves.


Being ‘Born Again’ is about making a new start with a clean slate, forgiven for the mistakes of the past and having a living relationship with God, through Jesus. It is not a physical rebirth, but a spiritual birth as our spirit comes alive to God’s Spirit. As a baby, Jesus says we are born physically, ‘Born of Water.’ As Christians we are born spiritually, ‘Born of the Spirit.’


If you have chosen to be a follower of Jesus, if you know that he has forgiven your sin, you are a Born-Again Christian, whether you would use that term or not!


Pray:

Thank you. Lord Jesus, that through faith in you I am born again by your Spirit.

Help me to follow the guiding of your Spirit each and every day of my life.

Amen


Jesus be the centre

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=884tPls01e0

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