Sermon Title: “You Must be Born Into It” (Click Here to watch full sermon)
Scripture Reading: John 3:1-8
Pastor Dennis Martin
Keep in mind that from the time Jesus was on the cross and buried, the disciples were in a season of tarrying for the Holy Spirit. We have to be taking our time to incline ourselves about the person of the Holy Spirit and His ministry. God wants to do a work for and through you, with the ministry of the Holy Spirit.
John 3:1-8 is a popular text. Jesus is messing with the religiosity of people. Nicodemus came talking to Jesus saying that I know You are a greater teacher come from God. Jesus didn’t even acknowledge this. He began to speak to the issue at hand. He said unless a person is born again, he cannot enter the Kingdom of God. What a culture shock to Nicodemus – he thought he was already in the Kingdom of God. We come to think that there are some things we are entitled to. There are some things in God we aren’t entitled for, we have to be born into it. There are some things we won’t have in our lives just the way we are. Change is required. Being born again speaks to regeneration. All his life, Nicodemus thought there were some things he was entitled for because of Abraham and because he was a jew and then Jesus comes and tells him that unless he is born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God. This is a challenging thing. It’d be one thing if Jesus said unless you are washed. But this is where the Holy Spirit comes into the mix. We need to sensitize ourselves to Him and become co-labourers. Jesus said we must be born again. There is no man or woman walking on heaven and earth that gave birth to themselves. The fact that we must be born again is telling us it must be done through the Spirit. There is nothing that we might have inherited. We can only go so far being a member of Kingsway Community Life Center. Jesus isn’t denying any form of benefits the jewish people are supposed to have as children of Abraham. But He is letting them know that to see the Kingdom of God, change is required. Jesus accepts us as we are but the end goal can’t be where we are at right now. Change is the issue. We need to change for better. It’s not so much that God doesn’t answer prayer. God answers prayer. But Pastor Dennis has learned that it is us that aren’t making sure that we are the individual suitable for the blessing. We have to make sure that we are looking for a man who is ready to be a husband first. If you want to see the Kingdom of God understand that the kingdom is the rule of God on earth. Jesus is saying there is nothing wrong with something earthly. That which is born of spirit is spirit. Being children of a pastor doesn’t make Pastor Dennis’s children children of God. There must be change. Put your trust in the Holy Spirit to make those changes in you. Trust the Holy Spirit to make the necessary changes in you. We can’t change ourselves.
How many things have you attempted without relying on the Holy Spirit? Do we have to bring every little thing to God? Yet every situation is a little situation to God anyway. We have to incline ourselves to the ministry of the Holy Spirit. And one of the greatest ministries is that He is the one who will cause change in our lives. The friends we used to find value in, thinking they were the best to us, He will show us that they aren’t outstanding. Nicodemus comes in the midnight hour probably because He is fearful or concerned because Jesus was always surrounded by crowds and was larger than life and is today. Nicodemus wasn’t looking for this conversation, Jesus just led him to it. There are some things that we want to enter into but it has to come from change first. Many of us need to be regenerated. Certain amendments have to occur. Certain frustrations have to be fixed before we get the promotion. You had your heart out in the relationship. You loved this lady and all of a sudden the conversation went the wrong way and she revealed she didn’t sign up for this. There are some issues that we can’t fix on our own, it requires the ministry of the Holy Spirit. Nicodemus is in awe right now after hearing that something that he thought he was entitled to from birth Jesus is correcting him on. Jesus is saying truly truly verily verily I’m saying to you unless you are born again, you will not be able to see the Kingdom of God. You can’t enter into places you haven’t seen in your spirit yet. Many of us miss God-opened doors because we haven’t seen it yet. We have to see these doors – the doors that no man can shut. Unless we incline ourselves and sensitize ourselves to the Spirit of God we will miss open doors. Unless we are born again, we will not be able to enter the kingdom. That is, the Kingdom of God’s rule and reign on earth. And in heaven. If you want to enter into the will of God for your life you must be born again. What does that mean? It is synonymous to change.
Change is necessary. It is the only constant thing that we see. Pastor Dennis has four great boys and they are all going through stages of change. Growth hurts, change hurts, but what is more painful is being stuck in a place you don’t belong. If you want to enter the will of God for your life, it requires you to change. You don’t have to do anything else. You just need to change. Change is good as it is led by the Holy Spirit. He is the one who will lead you into all truth, truth about your life and ministry. The Holy Spirit wants to be your agent of change. There are things we may think we are entitled to. We have to put in work. Part of that work is that we tight up on our spiritual walk. Take deep inventory of who you are and make necessary amendments. If we take one hour of 7 days in a week and take deep inventory of our lives and allow the Holy Spirit to minister to us, we’d be surprised at how our life will look. You’d be surprised how that individual’s life will look after one month. Without the Holy Spirit, you will be the same person you’ve always been. Without the Holy Spirit, change won’t take place in your life. You won’t be able to see the Kingdom of God and the will of God unless you change. You have to be born into it. You can’t act your way into it. There is something you have to tangibly do. You can’t be Saul all your life, you have to be Paul. You can’t be Abram all your life, you have to be Abraham. Somewhere down the line the Holy Spirit is knocking on your door. When are you going to wake up and say I”m not going to subjugate my life to those habits anymore? When are you going to change? Realize, you have to be born into it. Pastor Dennis’s mom was a pastor and grandmother, Dennis was borderline ready to go Islam. His christianity is based on him finding God for himself and this is why his belief system is where it is at. This is why he doesn’t reject what his family taught him. When he was able to exercise his own will, he could have gone a different way. When he stands before God, he can’t mention anyone other than him. The gift of the Holy Spirit has been placed in us by God. We have to rely on Him in this season. We must know we want change in our lives. We don’t have to do it by ourselves. This is something that was designed to be done by the Holy Spirit.
This is a season where we need to rely on the Holy Spirit for change. It isn’t going to come easy. We don’t have a right for it. We need to be born into it. If Pastor Dennis was to ask us what is the door that we are asking God to open for us right now – what is that door? If it is a door we are asking God to fix – anything we are believing God for, we need to do the necessary changes and the Holy Spirit will make sure we are the person we need to be to get the business to the next level, the marriage – arguments, swearing they are over, peace and love will be in our home. When we are aware of what the Holy Spirit is supposed to do, we will no longer be a stumbling block but we will be co-labourers. But the Holy Spirit wants to do a divine upgrade. But it has to come through the change of the Holy Spirit. Jesus made it abundantly clear, that which is born of flesh is flesh. That which is born of spirit is spirit. Pastor Dennis’s kids are definitely his kids but unless they are born again of the Spirit they will not be the children of God. Unless there is change, they cannot be considered the children of God. How does the Holy Spirit do that?
As we spend time with the Holy Spirit, He enhances our prayer life and our time with God, the more we spend time with God, if prayer doesn’t change our situations it will change us. We don’t know what situations God allows us to go through to better us. There are some things that we are asking God to remove out of our lives but God is saying no this is part of the process. He is not allowing the pain of the process to cause us to forget the purpose. He is our Father, He is very much concerned about our development. The more we spend time, we get to understand our Father and we see God clearer because through the Holy Spirit, we have connection with our Father. We can recognize the hand of God in our life. We have to be able to see the hand of God in everything. There are believers right now who will say they will never follow astrology. We need to see God in everything – when He says go follow a star to see the Messiah or go to a potter’s house, we must know to go outside of the system and religion because we know God. We have to incline ourselves in this season to know God more. When we get closer to God, change takes place. Many of us are frustrated about who we are and what our life looks like not knowing that the more time we spend with the Holy Spirit, change takes place. And, when we are children of God we are now joint-heirs with Christ.
This is how it works. Nicodemus believed he was entitled to something. He didn’t mention it but Jesus saw through to it. Unless you are born again, you won’t enter into the Kingdom of God. You won’t see the Kingdom of God unless change takes place. Everything that we have we have to put in the work for. Salvation was not free. Jesus paid that price. Grace wasn’t free, Christ died and paid that price. When God gives us grace, He isn’t turning a blind eye to our sin. In this area, work has to be put into it. We have to put in the work. There are three enemies for the believer: there is the world, the enemy and the flesh. Jesus said He overcame the world and the enemy but we have to overcome the flesh but God in his infinite mercy allowed the Holy Spirit to become involved. Write down right now what you need to have changed in your life as well. The things you are looking for, you can’t enter in until you are born into it. Change has to take place. Have to be a good steward with the blessing God has given you. If you have bad spending habits you have to fix this, don’t point fingers. God is saying there are some things He wants us to enter into but it requires change. Nicodemus thought he was entitled to something. Jesus said that change was required to see it and to enter into it. This is a ministry by the Holy Spirit. While you are praying and tarrying up to the day of Pentecost. Ask Him to change you. Paul said in Romans chapter 7, in me it is to do good but how to get there I don’t know. But, by the power of the Holy Spirit we will get there.