What Does It Mean To “Be A Christian”?
In John 3:3, Jesus says “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God”. Many people have heard the phrase born again, but what did Jesus actually mean by it?
Well, Jesus meant something very simple yet very profound. You need to be ‘born again’, because your first birth was a birth into death. Psalm 51:5 says “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.” We all know that children are not pure, perfect beings! They may have a sense of innocence, but they still lie, steal and get angry just like the rest of humanity. We are all born first into sin – into corruption and brokeness. This means that we cannot enter the presence of God or the kingdom of God, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom 3:23) and “the wages of sin is death” (Rom 6:23).
And so, Jesus says you need to be born again so that you are no longer born into your sin, but made completely brand new by Jesus. 2 Cor 5:17 says “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation”, in other words, you’ve been re-born into a completely new person, no longer defined by your sin and brokenness, but by Jesus’ love, grace and forgiveness!
How does this happen? Jesus gives us two words as instruction over and over again in the Bible. He simply says “follow me”. This means we consider Jesus as friend and Lord. We build a relationship with Him as friend by spending time getting to know Him and we are also obedient to Him as our Lord, doing what He wants us to do. It is as simple as that. Follow Jesus!