Christ Within

Why did Christ tell Nicodemus that "except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God"?

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By: J. Surmi
1/29/2015 12:00:00 AM

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Over the years of reading and hearing many different watchman, teachers, and prophets, I have come to learn that there are things taught that are "wrong" or unbiblical, and there are things that are simply "hard" to understand. The apostle Peter says it this way about the apostle Paul's letters to the churches:

"... in which are some things hard to be understood"
2 Peter 3:16a [emphasis mine].

Also, by Paul's own admission his teachings and his ministry was faced with

"honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report: as deceivers, and yet true;"
2 Cor 6:8 [emphasis mine].

This tells me that deep truths and mysteries of God are not understood by the natural mind. Yes, there are many deceivers in the world and deceptive ministries, but there are also some true vessels of the Lord who are called to speak deeper truths to God's people. Yet, because these deeper truths are hard to understand, as Peter points out about Paul's teachings, these ministers and teachings are often incorrectly understood, twisted, or labeled as deception.

The incarnation of the Son of God (God becoming flesh) is not something understood by the natural mind. The messiah coming as "the seed of the woman" (Gen 3:15) is not a simple prophecy. Biologically, the woman does not carry the seed. The man does. For a woman to have "seed" is impossible because she only carries the egg. What this prophecy implies, then, is that a divine transaction must take place for this prophecy to be fulfilled. Let me explain it like this:

If a man deposits his "seed" in a woman they produce the same species. Namely, mankind. If God deposits his "seed" in a woman, what is the resultant species? Matthew 1:18 says that Mary

"...was found with child of the Holy Ghost"
[emphasis mine].

The Holy Ghost put the seed of God within the woman. Therefore, the fruit of this divine transaction was a body of flesh and blood, yet inhabited by the divine Spirit of God. The baby in the womb of Mary was not the same original "species" of fallen man. Jesus Christ came in the likeness of man. Meaning, he shared in the "flesh and blood" of man (see Hebrews 2:14); yet, he did not possess the same spirit of Adam that is passed to each generation of the fallen human race. The man, Jesus Christ, possessed the divine spirit of the eternal Son of God.

Why did God do this? Because this provided for our redemption. The old race of Adam is utterly lost and infected with sin. The old man can not be redeemed. The old man must die. Our fallen nature that we inherited from our father, Adam, must be crucified with Christ. Remember Paul's words to the Galatians:

"I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me" Galatians 2:20.

This is why Paul tells us so clearly in 2 Cor 5:17 that,

"...if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new"
[emphasis mine].

Paul also says to us in Galatian 6:15:

"For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature"
[emphasis mine].

There is nothing that "availeth", there is nothing that the old race of man can do to please God. Our only hope is in the new life of Jesus Christ. We must become a new creature in Christ Jesus. That is why Jesus tells Nicodemus that

"Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God" John 3:3.

This is a very real and literal event that must occur if we are to be delivered from our sin. We must experience a second birth as a new creature. That is why salvation for us can not happen unless God himself visits our heart and deposits the same life of Christ within us. God must plant the seed.

In the parable of the wheat and tares in Matthew 13, Jesus speaks of God planting His seed in the world. These good seeds are the "children of the kingdom" (Matthew 13:38). Their origin is from another kingdom, the kingdom of God. Yet, they are planted in this world. Jesus also explains that the enemy has planted his "seed" in the world as well. Both the wheat and the tares grow together until the end when the tares are removed and the wheat is manifested or revealed to the world.

There are some interesting theological aspects of the enemy sowing his seed in the world. However, for the purposes of this discussion, the parable simply points out that there is not only one "kind" of man (male and female) growing in this world. There are wheat, and there are tares. From the outside, the tares look like the wheat until the day of harvest, but they are not. When the wheat bears the fruit of righteousness, the tares are gathered and burned because they bore none.

That little blade of wheat doesn't really understand who he is or why he is in this big field growing with all these other plants. Not until the end, at least. Then it becomes clear that God has had a great purpose all along:

"Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:" Ephesians 4:13.

The apostle John says it this way:

"Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is"
1 John 3:2 [emphasis mine].

Is this not a great mystery? Will we be misunderstood or called "deceivers" as was the apostle Paul? Perhaps. But this is our calling. This is why the very life of Christ was planted within us. It is a mystery that we ought to search out. It is to us, that ...

"God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:"
Col 1:27 [emphasis mine].

God is doing something beautiful and it all begins and end in Christ. Lord, please give us understanding. Amen.

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