https://www.intouch.org/watch/what-is-the-meaning-of-being-born-again

Sermon Notes From Charles Stanley

KEY PASSAGE: John 3:1-16

SUPPORTING SCRIPTURES: John 5:24 | Titus 3:5 | Hebrews 9:27

SUMMARY

What does it mean to be born again?

There are a variety of opinions on this matter, but to understand what this term truly means, we must go to the Bible. Jesus used this phrase to describe a spiritual change that is required in order to have eternal life. Unless we are born again, we cannot enter heaven.

SERMON POINTS

John 3:1-16 records a conversation between Jesus and a Jewish Pharisee. After observing His miracles and hearing His teaching, Nicodemus came to Jesus one night saying, “Rabbi, we know that You have come from God as a teacher; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him” (v. 2). Instead of commenting on Nicodemus’ observation, Jesus told him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God” (v. 3).

How can I be born again?

Jesus was telling Nicodemus that his impressive education, obedience to the Law, and religious prominence in Judaism would not get him into heaven. What he needed was a brand new start—to be born from above. Being born again is the act of God by which He imparts eternal life to those who were dead in their trespasses and sins but have now accepted Jesus as Savior.

Nicodemus responded to Jesus with a question, “How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born, can he?” (v. 4). To help him understand, Jesus explained, “Unless [one] is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God” (v. 5). In other words, someone is born physically into this world as a baby, but to enter the heavenly realm, he must be born of the Spirit.

For his entire life Nicodemus had been taught that being Jewish and doing good works were what would gain him entrance into heaven, but now his pride was shattered, and he realized that nothing he’d done or built his life upon would benefit him eternally. He was spiritually bankrupt with no way to enter God’s kingdom.

He is not unlike many people today who have the mistaken idea that they are good enough to go to heaven. They attend church, give their offering, and may have even been baptized yet have never truly been born again. Some defend themselves by reasoning that God will surely accept them because they’ve tried to live a good life and haven’t committed any crimes. But in reality they aren’t good enough because everyone is born a sinner.

We must be careful not to make the same mistake the Pharisees did. They saw Jesus’ miraculous signs and heard Him teach, but they walked away without considering whether His claims were true. Nicodemus was different; he risked his religious reputation as a Pharisee to come see Jesus, listened to Him, asked questions, sought to understand what He was saying, and learned the truth.

What is the nature of the new birth?

  • It’s a spiritual experience. The new birth is the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. He convicts us of sin and helps us understand that our good works are insufficient in His eyes and will never make us fit for heaven. But He also assures us of God’s love and leads us to confess and repent of our sins and trust Jesus Christ as our Savior.
  • It’s a definite experience. Like physical birth, there’s a specific point at which a person is born again. It starts with conviction of sin and the realization that Jesus Christ died on the cross as payment for the penalty for our sin. We call out to Him for forgiveness, turn away from our old sinful lifestyle, and in faith accept Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord. It’s not a slow process but a radical change. There must be a transformation within our hearts that is so clear that we will know beyond a shadow of doubt that we have been born again. For some people, this moment may have occurred in childhood and they may no longer have a specific memory of it. But as long as there is full faith in Jesus, they have been born again.

    Jesus is the only one who can make us fit for heaven with a new birth. All other religions rely on good works, but no one can be good enough for God because we’ve all sinned against Him. We may seem righteous in our own eyes, but when measured against the perfection of God’s standards as found in His Word, we have no hope of heaven.

    We are not saved by our righteous acts but by God’s mercy and the regeneration of the Spirit (Titus. 3:5). If we could have been good enough, then the cross was a horrible mistake because it would have been unnecessary. However, only the shed blood of God’s Son could make forgiveness possible. This is the evidence of God’s awesome love and power—that He would reach down and save sinners.
  • It’s a lasting experience. Being born again changes us forever, but this doesn’t mean that we will be perfect. Our old sinful nature is still present in us, but as we confess our sins, Jesus’ blood continually cleanses us. We are now called to a life of holiness, obedience, surrender, and love for God. There must be external evidence that proves there’s been an inner transformation.

What are the results of being born again?

  • There’s a change in our relationship with God. Until Jesus becomes our Savior, we are enemies of God. Although we may be quick to deny that we are against Him, there is no neutral ground. We have either been reconciled to God through His Son, or we are at odds with Him.
  • There is a change in our position.The separation and enmity between God and us has been removed. Now we’re a part of His kingdom and members of His family. Our names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, and we will never lose our salvation.
  • There’s a change in attitude. The Holy Spirit works in us, sealing us as God’s children, transforming our hearts, and living out Christ’s life through us. He gives us wisdom, reveals truth, and guides us throughout our lives.
  • There is a change in our destination. Jesus said, “He who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life” (John 5:24).The Holy Spirit’s presence in us is our guarantee that we are forever children of God, and our eternal destiny in heaven is secure.

RESPONSE

  • Can you point to a time in your life when you became born again? If you sense this may not have happened for you yet, what is keeping you from surrendering to Christ and receiving forgiveness and eternal life?
  • If you are born again, what fruit in your life gives you reassurance of that? How has your life changed?

Jesus Visits Martha and Mary

Posted: April 13, 2021 in Uncategorized

Luke 10:38-42 38As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 40But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” 41“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, 42but few things are needed or indeed only one an Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Mary and Martha both loved Jesus. On this occasion, they were both serving him. But Martha thought Mary’s style of serving was inferior to hers. She didn’t realize that in her desire to serve, she was actually neglecting her guest.

Let’s Bring it Home: Are we so busy at times worried about what we are going to wear to Church, how we look and how we think others should dress for church? 

Are we so busy doing things for the Church to make us look good on the outside that we are forgetting the most important thing, which is sitting down with Jesus like Martha? Martha was sitting at the Lord’s feet, and Jesus said this was better for her and it will not be taken away. 

How many of us will not even invite people over to our house because we think it’s not presentable? 

Are you so busy doing things for Jesus that you’re not spending any time with him? Don’t let your service become self-serving. Jesus did not blame Martha for being concerned about household chores. He was only asking her to set priorities. Service to Christ can degenerate into mere busywork that is totally lacking devotion to God.

It is our inner House that we need to make presentable before God, and the only way to get that right is to invite Jesus into our hearts. When we do that and develop that deep hunger and thirst for his word is when the inner house begins to get cleaned up. 

Jesus Be Praised!

The Appearance of Evil

Posted: April 13, 2021 in Uncategorized
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2 Thessalonians 5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil

What does it mean not to give the appearance of evil?

Answer: Many Christians assume that to “abstain from all appearance of evil” (1 Thessalonians 5:22, KJV) is to avoid any behavior anyone might perceive as being evil. Not only do we flee from that which is evil, we flee from that which appears to be evil. For instance, a pastor should not be seen frequenting a bar because someone may think he is getting drunk. However, the actual meaning of this verse is a matter of some debate within Christianity.

Depending on the Bible version you use, 1 Thessalonians 5:22 refers to the “appearance of evil” (KJV), “every kind of evil” (NIV and NLT), or “every form of evil” (NRSV, NKJV, and ESV). Each is a good translation. The Greek word translated “appearance,” “form,” or “kind” can mean any of these things. The same word is used in 2 Corinthians 5:7 translated as “sight.”

Obviously, the difference in translations can lead to a difference in application. Is it the appearance of evil we should be concerned with, or is it staying away from all forms of evil?

One problem with emphasizing the appearance of evil is that it can make us slaves to the perceptions of others. There will always be someone who thinks that something you are doing is wrong, or that it looks wrong to him. So, rather than spending our time getting to know God and serving Him, we worry about the possibility that someone, somewhere, might misconstrue our actions. In the same letter that he wrote about avoiding evil, Paul wrote, “Just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please man, but to please God who tests our hearts”

 1 Thessalonians 2:4 But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel, even so we speak; not as pleasing men, but God, which trieth our hearts.

 Our goal is to live righteously before God, not to comply with others’ arbitrary standards of conduct.

At the same time, we are instructed not to allow our Christian freedom to become a stumbling block to others 

1 Corinthians 8:9 But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours becomes a stumbling block to them that are weak.

We are also instructed to be salt and light in the world (Mathews 5:13-16). Christians have been set apart 

2 Corinthians 6:17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. 

The Empty House

Posted: April 13, 2021 in Mathew
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Mathew 43-45  43“When an impure spirit comes out of a person, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. 44Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ When it arrives, it finds the house unoccupied, swept clean, and put in order. 45Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that person is worse than the first.t That is how it will be with this wicked generation.”

Jesus was describing the attitude of the nation of Israel and the religious leaders in particular. Just cleaning up one’s life without filling it with God leaves plenty of room for Satan to enter. The book of Ezra records how the people rid themselves of idolatry but failed to replace it with love for God and obedience to him. 

Let’s Bring it Home: We see drug addicts and alcoholics going back and forth into rehab. The question is why? Each time gets worse.  We pray for our loved ones and it appears the affected person turns to God for healing.  Once healed or clean, some throw the Bible back on the shelf.  That is where this verse of scripture comes in.  Your inner house is empty, and the devil sees this, then goes and gets seven more demons to re-occupy your inner house.  

Ridding our lives of sin is the first step. We must also take the second step: filling our lives with God’s Word and the Holy Spirit. Unfilled and complacent people are easy targets for Satan.

Jesus Be Praised!  


If this is the case, why cannot people overcome their addictions, drugs, smoking, drinking, sex addiction, porn, hate, holding grudges, backbiting, gossiping and the list goes on and on? It is so easy to read scripture, but we need to live out and be the scripture, we need to trust the scripture, and it will not be until we have a come to Jesus meeting and decide today to have or start that personal relationship with the one that lives inside of you, then you will see and experience the power of Jesus. 

Stop dressing up the outside of you, and start building the inside of you with the Holy Spirit who is God. It all starts with excepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, but it does not stop there, it is the continuous building and working on a relationship. And those of you who been saved for a long time, do not think you are all that, because the devil is just waiting for you to let your guard down, and is looking for a chink in your Armor.

Jesus Be Praised!


 Dementia: A chronic or persistent disorder of the mental processes caused by brain disease or injury and marked by memory disorders, personality changes, and impaired reasoning. This is the world’s definition. 

Once people accept that fact, they have this, the world has made it known that is no cure. So, a lot of times we accept what the world says and give up what Jesus says. Yea, we might pray for healing but DO WE PRAY FOR HEALING or just say the words because they sound good.

 As stated, the Most Powerful Weapon in the World is the word of God. We just have to stand on it and believe it as the world says. We serve a Resurrected Jesus! Easter Sunday, we Praised the Lord with Song and Dance. We demonstrated our love for Jesus with the Outward Appearance. 

We need to stop saying I got this Dementia, Cancer, or any other illness that the world says there is no cure. We need to keep standing on the word of God.

 I just do not see it. I believe if we keep our minds in the word of God, that will keep our minds straight. I am not talking about going to church. I am talking about your own one-on-one relationship with Jesus Christ. Reading his word and not just carrying around a Bible. Why would God allow your Memory to be taken or impaired when your mind is focused on Him? 

By the Stripes that Jesus Christ Bore on his back, we are HEALED. That is Scriptural.

 Jesus Be Praised!

Tough Love

Posted: April 11, 2021 in Tough Love, Uncategorized
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People, I am here to tell you that I don’t lend money out to enable a person to continue to do foolish things. 5 or 20 dollars here to support someone’s bad habit, especially to someone you know. This person might be a good friend or even a family member. At 60 years of age, you should have it together. As I look back over my life with the decisions I made, some good, some bad, I am the one who is living with the outcome of all of them.

This might seem harsh, but because you have pissed away all your years due to not taking advice or making bad decisions, and still in your 50s or 60s making bad decisions, I will not allow your problems to become mine. Not saying I will not help you, but I will only help you if you are headed in the right direction.

If you are 40 and older, and still running men and women, getting drunk, and using people to get by with no job or security in life. You need to stop now. I see people who have pissed their life away and then want to intrude on friends and family for resources to survive. With much love, it hurts to say no to a friend or family member who wants to borrow 5 or 10 dollars. Might not seem like much but giving that person 5 dollars is contributing to what is destroying him or her.

We need to stop giving strength to the devil’s schemes. The devil is out to kill, steal and destroy, and we are supporting that when we give to a person who you know for sure what he or she is doing with it. When you worked all your life and did the right things, you have the God-given right to enjoy the fruits of your labor.

I send this out in Love. Enjoy your life people, you worked for it, you earn it. Don’t let anyone stress you out to the point where you are getting sick. Pray for the person and lead them in the right direction. If they still want to go down the path of destruction, they go alone because it’s a choice they made.

Jesus Be Praised!


Proverbs 7:4-23  (4) Say to wisdom, “You are my sister,” and call understanding your kinsman; (5) they will keep you from the adulteress, from the wayward wife with her seductive words. (6) At the window of my house I looked out through the lattice. (7) I saw among the simple, I noticed among young men, a youth who lacked judgment.  He was going down the street near her corner, walking along in the direction of her house at twilight, as the day was fading, as the dark of night set in.  Then out came a woman to meet him, dressed like a prostitute and with crafty intent.  She is loud and defiant, her feet never stay at home; now in the street, now in the squares, at every corner she lurks.) (13) She took hold of him and kissed him and with a brazen face she said:  I have fellowship offerings at home; today I fulfilled my vows.  So I came out to meet you; I looked for you and have found you! (16) I have covered my bed with colored linens from Egypt. (17) I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes and cinnamon. (18) Come let’s drink deep of love morning; let’s enjoy ourselves with love! (19) My husband is not at home; he has gone on a long journey. (20)  He took his purse filled with money and will not be home till full moon.  (21)With persuasive words she led him astray; she seduced him with her smooth talk.  All at once he followed her like an ox gong to the slaughter, like a deer stepping into a noose (23) till and arrow pierces his liver like a bird darting into a snare, little knowing it will cost him his life.  

Proverbs 7:24-27 Now then my sons, listen to me; pay attention to what I say.  Do not let your heart turn to her ways or stray into her paths.  Many are the victims she has brought down; her slain are a mighty throng. Her house is a highway to the grave, leading down to the chambers of death.  

Although this advice is directed toward young men, young women should heed it as well.  The person who has no purpose in life is simple-minded (7:7). Without aim or direction an empty life is unstable, vulnerable to many temptations.  Even though the young man in this passage doesn’t know where he is going, the adulteress knows where she wants him.  Notice her strategies: she is dressed to allure men (7:10); her approach is bold (7:13); she invites him over to her place 7:16-18); she cunningly answers his every objection (7:19, 20); she persuades him with smooth talk (7:21); she traps him (7:23).  To combat temptation, make sure your life is full of God’s Word and wisdom. (7:4). Recognize the strategies of temptation, and run away from them-fast.  

You can take definite steps to avoid sexual sins.  First, guard your mind.  Don’t read books, look at pictures, or encourage fantasies that stimulate the wrong desires.  Second, keep away from settings and friends that tempt you to sin.  Third, don’t think only of the moment-focus on the future.  Today’s thrill may lead to tomorrow’s ruin.  


[1] My son, pay attention to my wisdom, turn your ear to my words of insight,

[2] that you may maintain discretion and your lips may preserve knowledge.

[3] For the lips of the adulterous woman drip honey, and her speech is smoother than oil;

[4] but in the end she is bitter as gall, sharp as a double-edged sword.

[5] Her feet go down to death; her steps lead straight to the grave.

[6] She gives no thought to the way of life; her paths wander aimlessly, but she does not know it.

[7] Now then, my sons, listen to me; do not turn aside from what I say.

[8] Keep to a path far from her, do not go near the door of her house,

[9] lest you lose your honor to others and your dignity to one who is cruel,

[10] lest strangers feast on your wealth and your toil enrich the house of another.

[11] At the end of your life you will groan, when your flesh and body are spent.

[12] You will say, “How I hated discipline! How my heart spurned correction!

[13] I would not obey my teachers or turn my ear to my instructors.

[14] And I was soon in serious trouble in the assembly of God’s people.” [

15] Drink water from your own cistern, running water from your own well.

[16] Should your springs overflow in the streets, your streams of water in the public squares?

[17] Let them be yours alone, never to be shared with strangers.

[18] May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth.

[19] A loving doe, a graceful deer—may her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be intoxicated with her love.

[20] Why, my son, be intoxicated with another man’s wife? Why embrace the bosom of a wayward woman?

[21] For your ways are in full view of the Lord, and he examines all your paths.

[22] The evil deeds of the wicked ensnare them; the cords of their sins hold them fast.

 [23] For lack of discipline they will die, led astray by their own great folly..


Colossians 3:21 Fathers (Parents), do not exasperate your children, so that they will not lose heart. 

The purpose of parental discipline is to help children grow, not to exasperate and provoke them to anger or discouragement (see also Colossians 3: 21). Parenting is not easy, it takes lots of patience to raise children in a loving, Christ-honoring manner. But frustration and anger should not be causes for discipline. Instead, parents should act in love, treating their children as Jesus treats the people he loves. This is vital to children’s development and to their understanding of what Christ is like.

Jesus be Praised! 


These verses are not a plea against generosity, but against overextending one’s financial resources and acting in irresponsible ways that could lead to poverty.  It is important to maintain a balance between generosity and good stewardship.  God wants us to help our friends and the needy, but he does not promise to cover the costs of every unwise commitment we make.  We should also act responsibly so that our families do not suffer.