You Must Be Born Again!
by Pastor Steve Brown
Master of Divinity, Asbury Seminary
In order for a person to go to heaven when they die, they must become a born again Christian. Jesus said in order for a person to see or to enter the kingdom of God a person must be born again: John 3:3-7. This experience of being born again is totally different from becoming a church member, being baptized, or even having a belief in God. It is different than just learning knowledge about God or His Son, Jesus Christ. You can be a good church member, go through catechism, teach Sunday School and not be born again.
Some Church people believe if you are baptized, then go through confirmation, you are a saved Christian and going to heaven. This is not true. The new birth does not come through baptism and confirmation. It is a totally different experience. If you're trusting in your baptism and confirmation to save you, you will perish in hell.
Some false preachers have been teaching people a short cut to salvation such as coming to an altar to publicly confess Christ and saying the sinner’s prayer. Then, they say, you will be born again. Both Billy Sunday and Billy Graham have taught this man-made easy way to be saved. It is false. If you got saved by making a decision to accept Christ by saying a sinner's prayer, then you are still lost. This short cut to salvation neglects to teach repentance and saving faith in Jesus Christ.
Jesus teaches we must repent of our sins or we will perish. Jesus teaches us that being saved is like seeking to find a narrow difficult gate (Luke 13). To be born again, a sinner must hear the true, complete Gospel, then seek to find and experience this gift of salvation that Jesus wants to give. There is no short cut. It is a struggle of the soul to seek Jesus through a humble sorrowful repentance until Christ reveals Himself and grants saving faith by changing the sinner into a child of God through the new birth.
Do not be deceived by the false prophets' short cuts, easy believism, and false new births. If you do not experience the difficult, true new birth you will perish.
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