Summary: The requirement for receiving forgiveness for sin and a home in Heaven is a new birth.
Text: John 3:1-16
1. Who must be born again?
Romans 3:23 “All have sinned and come short of the glory of God”
Isaiah 64:6 “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.”
2. Why must I be born again?
>The fiery serpents that we read about in
Numbers 21 represent sin.
>The serpents were full of deadly venom
1. Sin is an act of rebellion against God.
2. Sin brings certain death.
>Psalms 7:11 God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day.
>All of us are born with the venom of sin working in our lives to bring us to destruction.
>Each of us will one day stand before God and give account of ourselves to Him for every sin we have committed.
>How can I be born again?
1. The brass serpent was a preview of Christ on Calvary providing a remedy for our sin. As the serpent was the remedy for the snake-bitten Israelites, so the Cross of Jesus Christ is the only remedy for a sin infested world.
2. Just as the people had to look to the serpent to receive healing, so we must look to Jesus for Salvation. There are no substitutes. The Israelites could not devise any other plan to cure themselves and save themselves from certain death. There is no substitute for the blood of Jesus Christ.
3. Isaiah 53:5 says, “But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.”
“[This literally means] ‘He was pierced on account of our rebellions.’ The pain was his, in consequence of the sin that was ours. Rebellion is the primary element in all human sin. Bruised for our iniquities indicates that the Redeemer was shattered for our ‘inborn crookedness.’
The answer to the question, “How can I be born again?” is this:
1. Realize that your sin is what is separating you from God. God is not separating himself from you. Your sin is causing the distance between you and God.
2. Confess your sins to God. I John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
3. Repent! Turn from your sin. A person who repents turns around and heads in the opposite direction as he was previously traveling. Acts 3:19a Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out
4. Believe in Jesus Christ to forgive and to save you from your sins. Acts 16:31 “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.”
Footnote> Beacon Bible Commentary, vol. 4, Beacon Hill Press, Kansas City, 1966, pg. 224