The Nature of Regeneration
by Tim Naab
Regeneration is the sole Divine act of God apart from any act or belief of man in which the Spirit of God is imparted to bring about the deliverance from God’s wrath.
The New Testament describes regeneration as—
(a) A Birth.
God the Father is He, “that begat,” and the believers are those who have been “begotten” of God (1 John 5:1 (KJV) 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.) only those who are born of God can believe that Jesus is the Christ., “born of the Spirit” (John 3:8 (KJV) The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.), and “born from above” (literal translation of (John 3:7 (YLT) ‘Thou mayest not wonder that I said to thee, It behoveth you to be born from above;). These terms refer to the act of creative grace and just as creation was not a re-action on the part of God, neither is re-creation a re-action on the part of God.
(b) A Cleansing.
God saved us by the “washing (literally, layer or bath) of regeneration.” Titus 3:5 (KJV) Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost), he saved us by regenerating us. The soul was completely bathed from the defilements of the old life and made to live in newness of life—an experience pictured by water baptism. Acts 22:16 (KJV) And now why tarriest thou? Arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.).
(c) A Quickening.
We were saved not only by the “washing of regeneration” but also by “the renewing of the Holy Ghost.” Titus 3:5 (KJV) Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;). Compare also Colossians 3:10 (KJV) And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:, The essence of the regeneration is a new life imparted by God the Father, by the meditation of Christ and by the operation of the Spirit.
(d) A Creation.
He who created man in the beginning and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, recreates him by the operation of His Holy Spirit. 2 Corinthians 5:17 (KJV) Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.; Ephesians 2:10 (KJV) For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.; Galatians 6:15 (KJV) For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.; Ephesians 4:24 (KJV) And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.; compare Genesis 2:7 (KJV) And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.. The practical result is a radical change in the individual’s nature, character, desires, and purposes. Again, this is not a re-action on God’s part but an action.
(e) A Resurrection.
Romans 6:4 (KJV) 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. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Colossians 2:13 (KJV) And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;; Colossians 3:1 (KJV) If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.; Ephesians 2:5-6 (KJV) Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:). As God quickened the lifeless clay and made it alive to the physical world, so He quickens a soul dead in sins and makes it alive to the spiritual world. This act of resurrection from spiritual death is symbolized in water baptism. Regeneration is the change that God works in man when He commands it to live
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