Be Born Again...

General discussions about Christianity including salvation, heaven and hell, Christian history and so on.
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PaulSacramento
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Be Born Again...

#1

Post by PaulSacramento » Mon Sep 26, 2016 10:47 am

Could being born again be in reference to the resurrection?

In John 3:3
3 Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”


This of course confused Nicodemus who replied and questioned:

4 Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born?”


to which jesus replied:
Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.[c] 7 Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You[d] must be born again.’ 8 The wind[e] blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”


Of course Nicodemus was still confused and, in reality, Jesus didn't really answer him in a plain fashion and goes on to say:

11 Truly, truly, I say to you, we speak of what we know, and bear witness to what we have seen, but you[f] do not receive our testimony. 12 If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things? 13 No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man.[g] 14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.[h]
16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.



The above has been used, by some, to justify that baptism is needed to be saved ( Born again and born of water).

I don't wanna get into that because I want to address the possibility that Christ was speaking of the resurrection.

At the resurrection we are "born again" (in a manner of speaking), we are born in the Spirit by the Water of life ( that is Christ).
Jesus speaks about the very nature of the resurrection ( the first one, the one of believers), how those that believe in Him are saved (from judgment) not condemned, how they will not perish, how only then they can enter the Kingdom of God.

Never really looked at it that way until just earlier today...

DBowling
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Re: Be Born Again...

#2

Post by DBowling » Mon Sep 26, 2016 3:58 pm

PaulSacramento wrote:Could being born again be in reference to the resurrection?

In John 3:3
3 Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

There are a couple of reasons that I don't think the phrase "born again/born from above" is a reference to the resurrection of the dead.
1. The first is that being born again/born from above (coming into new spiritual life) is a very different thing from the resurrection.
I think you follow N.T. Wright, and one of the major points that Wright drives home is that resurrection is a reference to the physical body dying, and then after death, the physical body coming back to life.
2. The other point is that John does make reference to 'resurrection' in his Gospel and he never equates the resurrection of the dead with being born again/born from above.

I think John 3:6-8 does a good job of explaining what Jesus means when he uses the term born again/born from above.

6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.[c] 7 Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You[d] must be born again.’ 8 The wind[e] blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”


In this passage, Jesus explicitly equates being born again/born from above with being "born of the Spirit"
Jesus also explicitly contrasts being "born of the flesh" (physical birth) with being "born of the Spirit" (spiritual birth)

So according to Jesus in John 3, being born again/born from above is new spiritual "birth of the Spirit".
In contrast, as Wright points out, the resurrection refers to the restoration of our physical body after the physical body has died.

Instead of resurrection, I think a more accurate parallel to being born again/born from above is Paul's use of the tern "new creation" in 2 Corinthians 5:17.
17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, [h]he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.


In Christ

PaulSacramento
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Re: Be Born Again...

#3

Post by PaulSacramento » Tue Sep 27, 2016 4:44 am

Hi DB,
Oh yes I know Wright's view and I agree, the resurrection is a restoration of our physical bodies.
That said, they will NOT be like our current bodies are now. Like Paul says, they will be spiritual as opposed to "soulish" ( or "fleshy" if you prefer). It is not that they won't be physical and material BUT that they will "animated" by the spirit as opposed to "flesh and blood" like they are now.
As Jesus' body was.

I think the point of the view that Jesus COULD be ( I don't think that he was directly speaking of the resurrection mind you) speaking of the resurrection is that it will be the physical BUT spiritual resurrection, a resurrection "powered and sustained" by the spirit instead of normal bodily functions.

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Re: Be Born Again...

#4

Post by puddleglum » Tue Sep 27, 2016 8:15 am

Having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth for a sincere brotherly love, love one another earnestly from a pure heart, since you have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God;
(1 Peter 1:22-23 ESV)


The people to whom Peter was writing had been born again, so it isn't possible that the new birth is the same as the resurrection.

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