Posted by: missionventureministries | November 9, 2017

WHAT MUST WE DO TO BE BORN OF GOD – 1 John 2:28-29

And now, little children, abide in Him, that when He appears, we may have confidence and not be ashamed before Him at His coming. 29 If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone who practices righteousness is born of Him.(1 John 2:28-29) 

The Bible tells us that to become a child of God we must be born again – born of Him. When we are born, is our first birth, but there is a second birth that God offers; which is our choice of starting a new life in Him. 

This happens when a person willingly repents, turns away from sin, asks Jesus for forgiveness and for Him to become the Lord of their life. The Spirit of God then enters the person to give them the power to start this new life. The person becomes a new creation in Christ and is spiritually born into the family of God and so becomes a child of God.  

God sends His Holy Spirit to live within believers to give them power over their sinful nature so that they are able to live a life that is pleasing to Him. Through the Holy Spirit, believers are freed from the power of sin and its penalty of hell and they are no longer slaves to their sinful nature. 1 John 3:9 tells us that “no one who is born of God will continue to sin” so that we know that anyone who is born again will not live a sinful lifestyle. 

Jesus is the only way to be reconciled to the Father. He said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).  

Religion will not get you to heaven nor can you work your way there by doing good things, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one can boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9). If you refuse to accept God’s free offer of salvation then, by choice, you will face eternity apart from Him. God has paid the price to save you; it’s now up to you to accept the gift of eternal life that Jesus paid for you on the cross. Jesus said to His disciples before being crucified, “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13). 

If you want to be saved you need to pray to God with a repentant heart, willing to turn away from all sin and wanting to be changed. Confess your sins and ask Jesus to forgive you and ask Him into your life as your Lord and Savior. The Bible says, “That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved…everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” (Romans 10:9-10 & 13).  

God looks at your heart and, if you have a willing heart to turn from sin, you will be saved the moment you ask and Jesus will become part of your life through the Holy Spirit, to strengthen, guide and enable you to live the life He wants for you. 

Now you might ask, how do I know that I am really saved? 

The Bible makes it very clear that we can know if we are saved. 1 John 5:13 states, “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.”  

In Ephesians 1:13-14 we read that: “you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of His glory. 

And 1 John 4:13 it says, “We know that we live in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit.” From this verse we can see that the proof of our salvation is the presence of God’s Spirit in our life. 

So how then does the Spirit make His presence know to us, and how do we really know that the Spirit is in our life? In Romans 8:14 it says that “those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God” so we know because He leads us and prompts us to live a holy life. When we follow this inner witness of the Spirit we are changed, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” (2 Corinthians 5:17). This happens as the Spirit leads us to leave our old sinful way of life and to become born again into a new life that pleases God. 

When a person becomes truly born again Christian they still have the choice to sin against God and His commands; however, as they choose to receive the power of the Holy Spirit, they will obey and honor God and His Word in everything that they say, think and do. All of us have the choice to obey the Spirit and resist sin so that we can live a holy life that will bring honor and glory to Jesus Christ our sacrificing Savior. 

John 16:8 tells us that, “When He comes, He will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment.” The Spirit’s conviction of sin brings guilt and a lack of peace in our life leading us to confess that sin, receiving forgiveness and being cleansed of it because as stated in the Word, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).  

Through this process a person is not just forgiven but also cleansed of sin and has new life. 2 Thessalonians 2:13 says that we are saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit. 

We must remember though that we have a responsibility to follow the Spirit’s leading because “if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live” Romans 8:13. 

The little book of 1 John makes it very clear that a person who is “born of God” will not continue in sin. “No one who lives in him keeps on sinning … He who does what is sinful is of the devil … No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in him … This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother” 1 John 3:6-10. 

We must, through the power of the Holy Spirit, live a life that is pleasing to God because Hebrews 12:14 says, “That without holiness no one will see the Lord.”  

So how do you know if you are saved? If you have repented of your sins and asked Jesus to be the Lord of your life, then you have been born again. You will sense the Holy Spirit’s presence in your life when He convicts you of guilt in regard to sin (John 16:8) and when you confess your sins you will be forgiven and cleansed and the peace of God will return to your life. The Holy Spirit’s presence empowers you to walk in holiness and that is your absolute assurance of salvation. 

1 John 5:3; 3:23 say, “This is love for God: to obey His commands … and this is His command: to believe in the name of His Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us.” As the Spirit cleanses you from sin, God’s greatest command to love Him and your neighbor becomes a reality in your life. 

We need to make sure that we understand that true rebirth is a permanent, life-transforming miracle accomplished by God Himself in a believer’s life. Holy conduct is the evidence of a born again child of God whose life has been transformed by the indwelling Holy Spirit. There is no such thing as proud holiness; true holiness always begins with conviction of sin and a humble approach to God for cleansing and restoration.

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