In our current climate of the ever changing church, something “new” has come up. “New” is used loosely because the Bible tells us “there is nothing new under the sun,” Eccl 1:9. When it comes to missing the Bible doctrine mark, somewhere back in time something similar has come up before.
The words of Jesus should give every Christian that sense of final authority. He said, “Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again,” John 3:7. “Must” means must!
To be qualified to enter heaven, a person must experience what we call the new birth. The Bible explains it this way: “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new,” 2 Cor 5:17.
A new birth, a new creature.
This doesn’t sound like aimless rambling toward the Kingdom of God until one day a person just comes to the realization that they are actually going to heaven. There is NOTHING gradual about the new birth in the words of the Bible. Someone can gradually change their mind toward God until years later they surrender, but surrender comes in an instant, as does the new birth. We are NOT gradually born again.
Think of the natural birth. Jesus used this image to illustrate the new birth. A child is not born over a period of years, gradually coming into the world. Each person has a birth date! Each person has that precise moment in time when they came into the world. Each believer has that moment in time when they were born into the kingdom!
“Must” means must. In fact, the word means “necessity.” It is necessary, according to Jesus, that a person be born again, that a person become a new creature in Christ.
Some of the “new teaching” paves the way for a person to “think” they are going to heaven because they attend church and like it, like the worship band, talk the lingo of the millennial generation, love sports, like the conversational style preaching and all the stage themes, the casual attire, the relevant subject matter taught, and the fact that no one tells them about sin. In fact, in some places, no one is pressed and pleaded with to seek to be born again.
The idea that no one is required to make a personal or public commitment to Christ may be counter-intuitive to the Word of God. Jesus said it is necessary (“Must”) that you be born again. Because the “sinners prayer” isn’t mentioned in the Bible, some have the idea that it is old fashioned, out dated, unnecessary, and not even biblical. Yet for every person who says they are born again without that “sinners prayer” of surrender to Jesus, there are thousands who prayed it and are still born again today. That prayer of surrender may not be mandated in the Bible, but being born again is! If the “sinners prayer” gets someone to that place, then it should be used. If our current methods don’t bring a person to the place of being a new creature in Christ, then that method should not be used.
The Bible fact is that we are to experience a new birth, a change from the old sinful nature to being a partaker of the divine nature. That doesn’t happen gradually. Anyone who is born again is not perfect. They still struggle with habits and failures, and must keep an open channel of repentance toward God.
Just because a teaching appeals to us doesn’t mean it is biblical.
“Must” means must! You must be born again. You must become a new creature in Christ.
You need a birth date into the Kingdom of God. So, if you are reading this and someone has talked you out of a precise moment of surrender to Jesus, please take a moment right now and pray to the Savior to come into your heart and give you His new nature. Tell Him you want to be born again. Tell Him you “must” be born again.