Last week we concluded by saying that, the first step to salvation was by being born again. I am sure that by reading the greatest certainty in life we have a better understanding of the old man in Adam. You understand that we are born in sin. However, the concept of being born again is something that has been going on in the church for a very long time more like trinity, which I will talk about next week. It is a concept that when talked about to non-believers, it might sound scary. A lot of people however, might not quite view it like Nicodemus is John 3, but I will say a lot of people do not understand it the way Jesus wanted us to understand it.
The word born again is mentioned three times in the entire bible; John 3:3, John 3:7 and 1 Peter 1:22:23. To explain this I will go with the popular encounter between Nicodemus and Jesus. Nicodemus was a Pharisee, he was part of the religious sect I will say did not like Jesus, probably wanted Him killed. He sneaked into where Jesus was and He said to Him, no one can do these signs, if God was not with Him, notice Nicodemus did not ask a question, but Jesus replied to him, saying “to see the Kingdom of God you must be born again. “
The word Kingdom of God in the brief introduction to the story is quite interesting. To understand this word and to even understand what it means in the scripture, the root words of kingdom has to be analysed; which are king and dom. A king does not have to be explained as everyone knows what it means, but what about dom. Dom appears in other words such as freedom, officialdom and so on, but even in words such as freedom, you can see that there must be a place before you are free, even in the dictionary definition of kingdom, it can be seen that the word domain is used. Therefore, what is a domain? According to the dictionary a domain is defined as “an area of territory owned or controlled by a particular ruler or government. Synonyms for domain includes; realm, kingdom, empire, dominion, province, estate, territory, land and so on. A king therefore, cannot be a king if there is no domain and there is no dominion. Domain can be physical (can be seen or cannot be seen). Look at the word freedom for example, you can be free from a situation, which might be bothering your mind/heart e.t.c, and you can be free from a prison for example. A domain covers both physical and spiritual circumstances, as explained by Jesus Himself in Luke 11:17-25. Jesus was trying to explain Kingdoms here, He had just driven demons out of a man, but some of them said that He had done that using Beelzebul (a name of satan). Jesus replied, a Kingdom cannot be divided against itself, Kingdoms do not fight itself, the United Kingdom cannot fight the United Kingdom, just like satan will not fight satan, Jesus concluded and said, because He has driven the demons out of the man by the finger of God, then God has a new territory in the man. The Kingdom of God can also be a physical place, like in Luke 13:28 and in many other verses I will put in the further studies. A domain can be your interest, area of specialisation or even the purpose of something. What about dominion? Dominion is just the power of the territory, the sovereign and the sovereign is basically the ruler.
To understand this phenomenon, lets go back to the history of mankind, we see in the beginning we are kings (Genesis 1:26), God said let us make mankind in our likeness and image to dominion/rule over the fish and so on and over all of the earth. You can see domain coming into play here (the earth), that is the outward/physical domain but God’s Spirit was already in man, so the earth was under indirect rulership by God but through man. Myles Munroe used the word Colonisation. As already explained in other post, man lost his dominion, domain and kingship. This is not our focus for today but I thought it is highly essential in understanding John 3:1-15.
Nicodemus replied and answered, How do you expect me to be born again when I am old, surely I cannot enter my mother’s womb again. Jesus was surprised that Nicodemus did not understand what He meant, because He was one of Israel’s teachers (verse 10-12). Born again is an earthly term with a spiritual bearing (verse12). Verse 6 says, He said that Flesh gives birth to flesh but Spirit gives birth to spirit. Remember to enter the Kingdom of God, you must be born again and this term is an earthly term. I have explained what a Kingdom is, and there is something called Kingdom life, which was the life we were ordained to live from the beginning. With the fall of the first Adam through sin our dominion was lost, but the good news is that is that the Kingdom of God is here (Mark 1:15). The arrival of the Kingdom life was completed on the cross of Calvary.
The question now is how can someone be part of a particular country? The answer is he must be either naturalised or born there. As humans we were born of flesh, but how can we be born of spirit when we were already born into sin. The Holy Spirit cannot naturalise in you because God cannot stand sin, the Holy Spirit left man in the first place because of sin. There is no room for naturalisation of the Holy Spirit in the old man. The only way therefore is to be born of Spirit and that entails being born again. Born again therefore is a Kingdom term, you have to understand the concept of Kingdom’s to understand the concept of being born again, this was the aspect Nicodemus did not understand. I will ask, if I was born in Utopia and I have a British Passport, how could I have obtained a British Passport if I tell you I did not naturalise there. The answer is Utopia became Britain; this is synonymous with colonial history. Your birthday according to the law is not the day that you were born but the day Britain invaded Utopia. Therefore, you did not exist according to the law before the invasion, you only start to exist after the invasion, your old passport will seize to exist and you become a new man, your past is wiped away, there is another chance to make it right and you get to have a new identity. There will be new laws, new rights, new lifestyle and everything. Being born again is not different. There is a part to being born again one must understand and that is, you have to aid the invasion, you are almost like an ally helping with the invasion. You help the country that is meant to take over, in defeating the other country (the old country), you have to confess your sins. The reason why being born again is not complicated at all, is because you were an ally and you were part of the kingdom before. (Parable of the prodigal son Luke 15:11-32).
Lastly, when Paul said your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit in 1 Corinthians 6:19, he was talking about territories. The Holy Spirit dwells in anyone who is born again, but does not move in all at the same time. Just like if any country has been invaded. Like in our example, people from Britain will start to move into Utopia and the people of Utopia will have to learn the languages, cultures and the general way of life of the people of Britain. No one learns the language, culture and the general way of life of the people who invaded the country, it does take time, how much time it takes depends on how much time you spend visiting the people who came from that land (how much time you engage with the Holy Spirit) just like any relationship, there will be exchange of gifts and food, the Holy Spirit has a lot of gifts and fruits for the people who always come visiting. Lastly, if you become close friends with the Holy Spirit He will take you to the headquarters of the Kingdom of God, which is obviously heaven.
- Latin meaning word for domain and it’s meaning http://www.britannica.com/topic/dominus.
- Online dictionary meaning of domain. https://www.google.co.uk/#q=domain+meaning.
- Dom, meaning. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/-dom
- Mark 10:14 ,Luke 17:21 ,Colossians 1:13 ,Luke 11:17-25 , John 18:36.
- I will also want us to try and find a definition of born again based on this. You can send your definitions to firstname.lastname@example.org.