“What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?”
the prophet Ezekiel said, “A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you” (Ezekiel 36:26). In the book of Acts, Peter called it repenting and being converted. Paul speaks of it in Romans as being “alive from the dead” (Romans 6:13). In Colossians Paul calls it “[a putting off of] the old man with his deeds; and [putting] on the new man which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him” (3:9–10). In Titus he calls it “the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost” (3:5). Peter said it was being “partakers of the divine nature” (2 Peter 1:4). John termed it passing “from death unto life” (John 5:24).
Thus the Bible teaches that man can undergo a radical spiritual and moral change that is brought about by God Himself. The word that Jesus used, and which is translated “again,” actually means “from above.” The context of the third chapter of John teaches that the new birth is something that God does for man when man is willing to yield to God. Man does not have within himself the seed of the new life; this must come from God Himself.
One day a caterpillar climbs up into a tree where nature throws a fiber robe about him. He goes to sleep, and in a few weeks he emerges a beautiful butterfly. So man—distressed, discouraged, unhappy, hounded by conscience, driven by passion, ruled by selfishness, belligerent, quarrelsome, confused, depressed, miserable, taking alcohol and looking for escape—can come to Christ by faith and emerge a new man. This sounds incredible, even impossible, and yet it is precisely what the Bible teaches.
Do you feel you are in a cocoon? Remember, His seed is within you, and you have been built to be an overcomer and to live your life the way God has designed you to live. All you need to do is to act upon the faith, turn to Christ and ask Him to give you your beautiful wings so that you might soar above your problems and be victorious over them.
“For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.” 1 (John 5:4)