If you have just believed the good news of Jesus Christ I want to encourage you in your new faith.
Please know this. You are so very loved by your Heavenly Father and there is nothing you can ever do to separate yourself from the love that we have with him in Christ Jesus our Lord.
“38 For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” – Romans 8:38-39
Please just take a minute to quietly sit and contemplate this truth and give thanksgiving and praise to your Heavenly Father. You are so very, very loved by your Heavenly Father.
I hope and pray that even know at this very moment you would know the love of God in Christ Jesus your Lord and that you would have his perfect peace. I know you don’t fully understand what’s happened to you right now. You know something is different but your not sure what or why.
As I told you before when you believed the good news of Jesus Christ crucified and risen for the remission of sin, you were at that very moment “born again” and that is why things are so different.
Born again? What does that mean? I’m sure you’re asking that question now. Well let me try and briefly explain.
When God made the first man and woman, Adam and Eve, he called them “good”. (Genesis 1:31) This means they were without error, without sin. God was very pleased with his creation, especially the man and women that he had made in his own image. (Genesis 1:27)
God made man in his own image and was very pleased with him. He created a garden for Adam and Eve to live in and he gave them all that they could every need or hope for, including, most importantly, free access and relationship with him, their Creator. In the midst of the garden he planted two trees; the Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. God told them they may eat of any tree in the garden but of the tree of knowledge that should not eat because if they did, they would die.
“15 The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it. 16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, 17 but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat[a] of it you shall surely die.” – Genesis 2:15-17
Later we see that Adam sinned and disobeyed God as he ate of the tree of knowledge. As I told you before the Scriptures teach us that the “wages” or payment of sin is death and because they both sinned by eating of the tree of knowledge both of them would be removed from the garden and one day die. Not only would they die but all of their offspring, all mankind would inherit their sin and a corresponding “sin nature” (this means they had a natural bent toward sinning, it became their basic nature to sin) and therefore all mankind would one day die and be eternally separated from God because of their sin.
But remember the good news you just heard and believed? Jesus Christ was crucified and risen for the remission of sin. That means Jesus died the death you deserved and in turn he granted you eternal life in him. Quite a trade!
This is what Jesus called being “born again”. In John 3 a man named Nicodemus came to Jesus and professed that the Pharisees (a group of conservative Jews) knew that Jesus was from God because of the works he was doing and Jesus’ reply to Nicodemus was a call for all to be “born again”.
“3 Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. 2 This man came to Jesus[a] by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do unless God is with him.” 3 Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again[b] he cannot see the kingdom of God.” 4 Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?”5 Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.[c] 7 Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You[d] must be born again.’ 8 The wind[e]blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” – John 3:1-8
What Jesus was telling Nicodemus is that anyone who wants to see the Kingdom of God and have eternal life in Christ must be born again. Only this time, in their Spirit. Because all men sin and fall short of the glory of God and because the wages of sin is death, the only way to know eternal life is to be born a second time. This time by the grace of God through faith in the good news of Jesus Christ crucified and risen for the remission of sin.
“12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” – John 1:12-13
So Now What?
Here are some things you should do next:
- Continue to pray and seek God. Continue to speak to him in prayer continually, never stop praying, pray constantly. Really! Talk to God continually throughout your day as this is very pleasing to him. “16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
- Listen for his voice. I can’t begin to explain to you how important it will be for you to hear the voice of the Lord. It is absolutely essentially to your relationship with God. I can’t tell you what this will sound like or what you will hear. But He will speak and you will hear Him. “27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” – John 10:27 “…Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.” – John 18:37 “20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.” – Revelation 3:20
- Find a community of believers in Jesus and fellowship with them regularly. Hebrews 10:24-25
- Be baptized. Here’s a link to a deeper explanation of what baptism is and why it’s important. Essentially, baptism is a picture of what has happened to you since you have been born again in Christ Jesus. Since you have already believed the gospel and been born again you’ve already been “baptized” by the Holy Spirit into the body of believers. But there’s another baptism of water, a symbol of what’s happened to you since you came to believe on Jesus Christ. You see, when you go under the water it represents the fact that by placing your faith in Jesus you joined him in his death on the cross. Further, by coming out of the water you’re demonstrating the reality that you also have joined Jesus in his resurrection from the dead. (Galatians 2:20, Colossians 3:1) Water baptism, does nothing to save you or secure your salvation, it merely works as a public profession that you in fact have been crucified and risen with Christ by grace through faith in the good news.
- Regularly partake in the Lord’s Supper. Here’s another link for a deeper explanation of what the Lord’s Supper is and why it’s important. Before Jesus left this world and ascended to the right hand of the Father there were very few, really only two “ordinances” that he told us to observe. The first is water baptism and the second is communion or the “Lord’s Supper”. Basically, communion is a time where the body of believers comes together to remember the Lord Jesus and his death on the cross. Just as the Lord on the night before he was to be crucified invited his disciples to eat of the bread and drink of the cup, we continue to take part in this practice today. The bread represents the body of Christ, given for us and the cup his blood, poured out for our sins. The Lord’s Supper is a very special thing. It calls us to a somber reflection and remembrance of the great, great price that Christ paid on the cross to redeem us from our sins and it should be done regularly.
- Get a Bible and read it. Ask the Lord to direct your reading. You’ll be confused by many of the things you read but remember, if you lack wisdom, just ask God to grant it to you and he will. James 1:5
- Pray again and listen for his voice again. Speak to the Lord and he will speak to you.
Grace and Peace
If you’ve come to this page and believed the good news of Jesus Christ I’d love to hear from you! Feel free to shoot me an email here if you like. firstname.lastname@example.org
I will be praying for you! Grace and peace be upon you in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.