TEXT: JOHN 1: 11-14 (read vv 1-14)
READING: 1 JOHN 5: 1-21
SUBJ: The New Birth, its purpose and its manifestation along with the honor it confers.
AIM: That we might properly consider the honor given in regeneration as sons of God.
INTR: Inasmuch as these verses lie at the beginning of one of the most read books of the Bible they are well known and often memorized and it is fitting that they should be.
1. While Genesis records the beginnings of creation, these verses describe the eternal existence of Christ as God and as the Word made flesh.
2. We are immediately aware of insufficient understanding as to grasp all that is contained hear any more than we can comprehend the fullness of God Himself.
3. Christ is the Word made flesh, Godâ€™s expression of Himself, God manifest in the flesh and those who are born of God recognize Him, know Him and fully embrace Him in eternal life.
THESIS: The mystery of the New Birth stands at the head of all believing experiences and without it there is no spiritual life or action. When it occurs, the evidences are unmistakable. And, by these the honor of sons is revealed.
I. The great honor bestowed on true believers (vv. 11-12)
1. Consider: 1 John 3:1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. And note the delight John expresses.
2. But, consider also, those who did not know Him in v. 10 - How can this be except they be dead in sins and trespasses.
3. Those, in particular, who knew Him not - the Jews, chosen people of God who had been exposed to the oracles of God and were the descendants of "faithful Abraham."
4. Those who received Him and the explanation of what it is to received Him:
1) We note the failure of the casual reader to see the importance of these things
2) And, there is difficulty with men in seeing that being the Son of God is more than a mere title and that receiving Him is not a superficial act. THEY BELIEVE ON HIS NAME.
5. The right (to become) and privileges of being sons is conferred and there is no greater honor.
II. That which enabled the honor (v. 13)
1. There could be no honor given without being properly constituted - "Which were born..."
1) The necessity of being brought into existence and responsiveness
2) Divine adoption comes with the life (Spirit) of His only begotten - it is life in the place of death.
2. What it was not:
1) Blood or "bloods" - that is because of one's heritage (note the claims of the Jews).
2) The will of the flesh - Manâ€™s will, while free, cannot move out of His own nature and so we realize this is not according to the nature of men and cannot be the cause.
3) The will of man with all its well wishing, preaching and best efforts cannot make it happen.
3. It is of God. The birth is of God. It is the doing of God and it is literally "from out of God."
III. The evidence of the honor having been given (v.14)
1. We would then compare verse 10, and those who knew Him not with the observation of John that "we beheld His glory & c."
2. The answer to Nicodemus was not an explanation rather a declaration of what must be and specifically not how to make it happen. Such thoughts are the invention of men in their vanity.
1) It is absolutely necessary but not attainable by men
2) It is the independent, sovereign work of the Holy Spirit
3. And finally we consider some evidences:
1) Necessary newness: Romans 6:4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
2) Necessary change: 2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
3) Necessary way of life: 1 John 2:29 If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him.
4) Necessary righteousness: 1 John 3:9 Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.
5) Necessary affections: 1 John 3:14 We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.
6) Necessary faith: 1 John 5:1 Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.
7) Necessary victory: 1 John 5:4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.
4. "... even to them that believe on His Name!"