BORN AGAIN -WHAT DID JESUS MEAN?
Have you been told that Christians believe the new birth as defined in Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary—Eleventh Edition? This is what Wacthtower has on their website site. Don’t believe this. It isn’t true. Christians do not define a born-again person as “a usually Christian person who has made a renewed or confirmed commitment of faith especially after an intense religious experience.”
Christians actually believe the new-birth is from above, is necessary to become a Christian, and it is a result of trusting Christ as Savior and Lord as described here:
A more complete explanation is found at GotQuestions?.
WHAT THE BIBLE TEACHES
I recently discovered that this religious group, Watchtower, has also written the following on their website:
The only place in the entire Bible where the expression “born again” is found is at John 3:1-12, which describes an intriguing conversation that took place between Jesus and a religious leader in Jerusalem. You will find that Bible account quoted in full in the accompanying box. We invite you to read it carefully. JW.org
While it is true that the words ‘born again’ written together are only found in John chapter 3, the teaching is found in several places in the new testament as seen in the following passages, all of which are believed and taught in the Christian church:
There came a man having been sent from God. His name was John. 7 He came as a witness, that he might testify concerning the Light, that all might believe through him. 8 He was not the Light, but came that he might witness concerning the Light.9 The true Light who enlightens every man was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world came into being through Him, and the world did not know Him. 11 He came to the own, and the own did not receive Him. 12 But as many as received Him, He gave to them authority to be children of God—to those believing in His name, 13 who were born not of blood, nor of will of flesh, nor of will of man, but of God. John 1
4 But when the kindness and the love of mankind of God our Savior appeared, 5 He saved us, not by works in righteousness that we did, but according to His mercy, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, 6 whom He poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that, having been justified by that grace, we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. Titus 3
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By His great mercy, He has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,… 1 Peter 1
DOES NEW BIRTH MEAN REGENERATION?
According to ThoughtCo.com, new birth is the same thing as regeneration. The Bible speaks in several places about regeneration. The writer at ‘Thoughts’ also writes:
Because God gives us this new birth, we know exactly where we stand. That’s what is so exciting about Christianity. We don’t have to struggle for our salvation, wondering whether we have said enough prayers or done enough good deeds. Christ did it for us, and it is complete.
John verifies this is true in chapter 1. He describes Christians as people…
John 1:13 …who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
Got Questions? gives a study of ‘regeneration’ taken from the Bible. Scripture is clear. Rebirth and regeneration are the same thing and regardless of what the world teaches, Jesus simple statement was completely accurate and Christ said all that needed to be said:
3 Jesus replied, “Truly, truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.” 4 “How can a man be born when he is old? Nicodemus asked. “Can he enter his mother’s womb a second time to be born?” 5 Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit.…John 3