Do you really know what it means to be “born again?”
Pollster George Barna classifies the “born-again” as all who say “they have made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ that is still important in their life today,” and who also indicate that they “have confidence that when they die they will go to heaven because they have confessed their sins and accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior.”
Using those criteria, anywhere from 35 to 43 percent of the U.S. population claims to be born again.
Now, at first glance, those numbers might cause us to rejoice. But, there is another side to the issue. Evangelical theologian Michael Horton laments, “Gallup and Barna hand us survey after survey demonstrating that evangelical Christians are as likely to embrace lifestyles every bit as hedonistic, materialistic, self-centered, and sexually immoral as the world in general”
But wait a minute! How can this be? How can so many believe they are born again and on their way to heaven, while at the same time living their lives just like most everyone else in the world lives?
Jesus warned that there will be many who call Him “Lord” who even have done amazing things in His name, but at the judgment He will say, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ (Matthew 7:23). That’s disturbing! In light of these things, we all need to be clear about whether we truly have been born again or not.
Every parent knows the great joy of seeing a new life come into this world, but there are some parents who go through the pain and sorrow of having a stillborn baby. The difference consists in that one quality, which even modern medicine cannot impart—life. In the spiritual realm, as in the physical, new life means everything! If a person is truly born of God, there will be signs of life. If those signs are missing, there is cause for great alarm.
This Sunday, we conclude our series on Deepening our Fellowship with God. We will draw insights and encouragement from the Apostle John’s final lessons to us in 1 John, chapter 5. Come join us and learn about three awesome certainties found only in Real Christianity.