The New Birth
By The Late Elder B. E. Echols
Text: John 3:1-12
The “New Birth” is many times mistaken or claimed for minor experiences which only lead one up to such a wonderful spiritual experience as this. One may have experienced CONVICTION OF SINS, ACTS OF REPENTANCE, FORGIVENESS OF SINS, and really BE CONVERTED from a life of sin to holy living and yet not be “born again” according to John 3:5. See Acts 3:19. These experiences, or steps toward the kingdom of God, are necessary; but must never be relied upon as being sufficient to salvation. We must go all the way with the Lord, as Elisha did with Elijah (2 Kings 2:1-15), if we are going to be filled with the Holy Ghost and enter His “Everlasting Kingdom.”
Many professed Christians of our day have never gone any farther than to confess their sins, and some not even that far. So let us see (1) what the New Birth consists of, (2) the essentiality of it, (3) how it is obtained, and (4) what the Bible evidence of having experienced it is.
What The New Birth Consists Of
The “New Birth” is not the birth which brings one into this world, as some may think or teach; for Jesus told Nicodemus, “Ye must be born AGAIN.” We know that “again” can never refer to the first birth, but must mean the second or another. Nicodemus first thought that Jesus was talking about the natural birth being repeated after “a man” was old; but all the time he understood that it was a SECOND birth that was to be accomplished, and that they were talking about a man and NOT a child. This was the thing that was puzzling Nicodemus: how a man could be born again when he was old.
As with many today, the trouble with Nicodemus was, that he was thinking of the “natural” while Jesus was speaking of the “spiritual.” See John 3:5-12; I Pet. 1:23. This “New Birth” Jesus was talking to him about was to be first “of water, and (then) of the Spirit.” The New Birth, then is a coming forth out of water, and the Spirit baptism into a new kingdom. “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body (the church: Eph. 1:22,23), whether we be Jews or Gentiles,” (1 Cor. 12:13). So it is the spiritual birth, and not just the compliance to water baptism, which makes us a “new creature” in Christ Jesus where the old order of things has passed away–and all things have become new (2 Cor. 5:17).
The Essentiality Of The New Birth
It is the birth “of water and of the Spirit” that makes us a child of the Heavenly King. Nothing else can ever put us into His Royal Family. It might be possible for us to be called His servants before being born again; but never can we be His children and have our names recorded in the Book of Life, in this dispensation of grace, without being “born of water and of the Spirit.”
David prophesying, concerning the future church (Psa. 87:5,6), said, “And of Zion (the church) it shall be said, ‘This and that man was BORN in her: and the Lord shall count when He WRITETH UP the people, that this man WAS born there.'” The he verb “was” is in the past tense, denoting that the birth was completed BEFORE the name was ever recorded.
Should we expect God to do a thing that none of us ever dares to practice, that is: the putting of the names of our children on our “family records” BEFORE they are born into this world? Yet some are so foolish as to think that the All-wise God would do such a thing–never!
By reading Dan. 12:1, Rev. 13:8, 20:15 and 21:27 you should see the importance of being “born of water and of the Spirit” in order to have your name recorded in the Book of Life. For it is only those who have their names recorded there, by being “born again,” who will be able to resist worshiping the beast and be permitted to enter that “City of Gold.”
My friend, if you ever enter heaven, you will have to be “born again,” (John 3:5,7). For, “if any man have NOT the Spirit of Christ he is NONE of His” — “does not belong to him” (Weymouth). And “He that believeth and is baptized (in water and of the Spirit) shall be saved; but he that believeth NOT (the gospel and does not obey it) shall be damned,” lost for ever! See 2 Thes. 1:7-9.
Every person is begotten and born in sin (Psalms 51:5), and in order to obtain deliverance from such a state, one “must be born again”–“of water and of the Spirit;” for this is the only experience that will deliver a person from a life of sin and degradation. See I John 5:18; 3:1-10; 2:28,29.
How The New Birth Experience Is Obtained
When you have been able to see the importance and essentiality of the “New Birth Experience” you should (1) REPENT of all your sins, if you have not already done so (Acts 2:37, 38) then (2) BE BAPTIZED in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ for the remission of your sins (Col. 3:17); then (3) the Lord will apply His blood to your soul and remit all your sins (Acts 10:43; 2:38; Rev. 1:5; Heb. 9:22; 1 John 5:8) also (4) baptize you with the Holy Ghost and fire. These four things will definitely produce that “born again experience” in your soul and your name will be recorded in the Book of Life–giving you a right to partake of the “tree of life.”
You need not doubt that this experience is for you “for the promise (of the Holy Ghost–which produces the final stage of or completes the New Birth) is unto YOU and to YOUR CHILDREN and to ALL that are afar off even as many as the Lord our God shall call” (Acts 2:37-39).
I must inform you that the mode and formula of water baptism which helps produce the New Birth Experience in your life, must be BY IMMERSION (Rom. 6:4,5; Acts 8:35-39; Mk. 1:5 9,10) and performed IN THE NAME of the Lord Jesus Christ (Col. 3:17; Acts 2:38) or your sins will not be remitted. See Luke 24:46,47; Acts 10:43; 4:10-12. Jesus is THE NAME of Matt. 28:19 for He came in His Father’s Name (John 5:43) and promised to send the Holy Ghost back in His own name (John 14:26). Jesus’ name in the Hebrew language is “Jesoshua” — which means “Jehovah saves” or “Jehovah has become our salvation;” and this is according to what Isaiah and Paul inform us about God being the only Savior of the World. See Isa. 45:20-22; 9:6; Matt. 1:23; 2 Cor. 5:19.
The Initial Evidence Of The New Birth
The only sure sign and evidence of one having just received, or been baptized with the Holy Ghost, the climax of the New Birth Experience, will be “speaking with tongues” as the Spirit gives the utterance–in some language which the recipient has never spoken before. See Mark 16:17; Isa. 28:11, 12; Acts 2:1-19; 10:44-46; 19:1-7.
In Rom. 8:15 Paul informs us that when the Spirit is received or comes into ones soul, He will begin crying or saying “Abbe Father.” A cry is the first sign of natural life in a new born baby, and so it is with those who are “born of water and of the Spirit” and have become “babes in Christ.” Have you received the Holy Ghost as they did on the day of Pentecost, at the house of Cornelius, and at Ephesus? If so, you spoke in tongues just as ALL of them did. See Acts 2:1-4; 10:44-46; 19:1-7.
The New Birth is only completed then, when a man or woman has been born “of water and of the Spirit” according to John 3:5, Acts 2:38 and being confirmed by the “initial evidence” of speaking with other tongues as the Spirit of God gives the utterance. Don’t be like the people Isaiah prophesied about in Isa. 28:11-13, and refuse to hear, read, consider, believe or accept this Bible message and truth.
A Final Exhortation And Benediction
For, the sake of your eternal welfare, be a “wise virgin” and get plenty of the Holy Ghost oil (Spirit) within your soul (Matt. 25:1-13), after you have repented and been washed clean by the water and the blood–according to the Word of God (Eph. 5:25-27; Acts 22:16, 2:3X; and 1 John 1:9,7; 5:8), or there will be no hope of your being saved. See Acts 4:10-12; 2 Thes. 1:7-9; Heb. 9:22; John 3:3-5.
Heaven and earth may pass away, but God’s Eternal Word shall never pass away (Matt. 24:35). Therefore, I now thank God, through Jesus Christ for the doctrine and personal experience of the New Birth which has given me life more abundantly in this present world and a definite hope of eternal life in the world to come. Oh hallelujah! Praise the Lord!
The Above Material Was Published By The Late B.E. Echols. This Material Is Copyrighted And May Be Used For Study & Research Purposes Only.