Vol.XX No.V Pg.5
July 1983

Born-Again" Christians

Robert F. Turner

"Back there," before the TV era, radio quiz shows were very popular. On one such program, one of the contestants, when called upon to introduce himself, proudly announced, "I am a born-again Christian." The MC replied, "I didn't know there were any other kind!" Are there any MC's still living who know that every one that is a Christian has been born again? There just aren't any Christians who have not been born again.

While on earth, Jesus taught many lessons under figures of speech. He spoke of entering the kingdom of God under the figure of a birth. He declared, "...except one be born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God" (Jn. 3:5). Jesus used a figure of speech in his conversation with Nicodemus. This figure, as well as others, must be interpreted in the light of literal statements made about the same thing.

The case of the rich, young ruler (Matt. 19:16-25) will contribute to our under- standing of our Lord's declaration to Nicodemus. The young ruler came with the question of what to do to "have eternal life." Jesus told him what to do to "enter into life," and further described it as "enter(ing) into the kingdom of heaven." That all these expressions had to do with being saved is evident from the disciples question, "Who then can be saved?" When it is learned what I must do to be saved, I will know what I must do to be born again.

"What must I do to be saved?" (Ac. 16:30) is the question the jailor asked. The apostle's answer is to "believe on the Lord Jesus and thou shalt be saved" (v.31). The actions of the ,jailor, under the direct guidance of the apostle, shows what it is to "believe on the Lord Jesus." The apostle continued by speaking the "word of the Lord" unto the jailor and his house (v.32). The jailor took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his immediately" (v.33). Following this, it is said, ...and he brought them up into his house and set food before them, and rejoiced greatly...having believe in God" (v.34). The jailor was "born anew"; he was now a "new creature Christ" (2 Cor. 5:17). I surely hope that people don't begin saying, "I am a born-again new creature!"

Any responsible person who is in Christ has been "born anew." And a cording to the word of God, "Ye are all sons of God, through faith, Christ Jesus. For as many of you were baptized into Christ did put Christ" (Gal. 3:26-27). Have you be baptized into Christ? Those, who the authority of Christ, have been baptized for the remission of their sins (Matt. 28:18-19, Mk. 16:15-16, Ac. 2:38 etc.) are in Christ, where every blessing in heavenly places is available" (Eph. 1:3).

People need to study the book Acts and interpret the figurative language which Christ used in his teaching, while he was on earth, in the light of the plain statements of the truth which the Holy Spirit guided the apostles to use in telling them what to do to be saved. ROBERT FARISH, Sherman, TX. 75090