Devotions - Read Online
Friday | 21 October 2016
A person has been born of the Spirit once all three Persons of the Godhead are dwelling within their heart. We note that it is the Holy Spirit who takes up residence in their heart first, regenerating and renewing them in the inner man. This is followed by the Spirit of the Father, who comes to bring them to birth as a new creation through the incorruptible seed contained in His word. Finally, the Spirit of Christ comes to dwell in their heart as the substance of their sonship. This means that they can live by a life that is not their own. It also means that they will no longer be trying to demonstrate their own righteousness. They will begin to demonstrate the righteousness of Christ by the power of His life within them. They have not been able to live this way previously.
Jesus provided an explicit description of what it means to be born of the Spirit. He said, ‘The wind [spirit] blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit’. Jesus was explaining that when a person is born of the Spirit, they are able to relate to the Spirit and to others ‘in the Spirit’. Together, they are able to know and move with Him in one Spirit, as He leads according to His own intrinsic substance and will. In contrast, a person who lives by the principles of the flesh is nothing like the wind. They know where they are going and how they will go about it, because their initiatives are allsourced in themselves. Their desire for control over their life, and the lives of others, is the antithesis of the nature of the Spirit.
"The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit."
For you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God.
"I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me."
More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, (9) and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith.
Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit." (14) Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.