(John 3:3) Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
The term born again can mean many things to many people. Let’s describe what the term born again does NOT mean:
Born again is not another term for reincarnation, that when you die you are born into the next world and live another life trying to reach nirvana. Born again also does not mean a new age experience whereby you keep searching for truth until you finally enter a state of spiritual awareness and enlightenment. Neither does born again describe a Christian evangelical political movement like the one we saw under the Carter administration in the 1970’s.
Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews, thought that being born again was entering into your mother’s womb a second time and being born. So you see, for a long time there have been erroneous views concerning the term born again.
Born again means to be born twice. (John 3:5) Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. It means you are born physically (once) and then you are born spiritually (twice). To be born spiritually means a new birth has taken place in your life. You have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit whereby God imparts spiritual life to the one who trusts Christ.
When you are born physically into this world you are born a sinner. That sin nature was passed on to you all the way from Adam and Eve. We are dead in sin and subject to the wrath of God until we accept the finished work of Christ on the cross. At that moment our sins are forgiven and the Holy Spirit enters us and we are born again. (Read Eph 2:1-9)
Jesus said to Nicodemus that unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God. That means to qualify for heaven you must receive Christ as your Savior and become a new person: (2 Cor 5:17) Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. It’s like getting a new heart transplant: (Eze 36:26) I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. There’s nothing you have to do. Just receive this free gift: (Titus 3:5) not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit.
Have you been born again? Why put heaven off when you can have the promise of eternal life right now? Born once, die twice. Born twice, die once.