"Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." John 3:5
Nicodemus and Jesus had a conversation about the Kingdom of God and eternal life. Jesus made the criteria for entering in very clear to Nicodemus-- you must be born again. Jesus didn't tell him you must join the church, you must become a church member, you must be baptized, you must be religious, you must do this or that work. He told him you have to be "born into the Kingdom" through the process of the new birth- you don't just work hard enough to get in.
When I was growing up, my sister, brother and I had friends and cousins that would come to our house. It didn't matter how often them came, how many times they sat around our table and ate, it didn't matter how many nights they stayed there or how long they stayed, it didn't matter that they felt at home and didn't want to leave, they were not a member of our family. They never would be unless my parents adopted them.
Just because you go to God's house doesn't make you His child any more than the friends that visited us made them my daddy's child. Sadly, we think it does. Nicodemus thought this way and Jesus scolded, and corrected, him about it. Nicodemus was religious, was in church all the time, and he was a teacher/leader in church. (Jesus even repeated it twice for him.)
I think it needs to be repeated for us again today. We need to be told again that we must be born again if we want to enter into God's Kingdom and have the gift of eternal life. To try to enter into His Kingdom and become a member of His family any other way than through "The Way"- new birth which comes through faith in Jesus Christ- is not possible. You will never be good enough or do enough good works or religious deeds, and you will be considered a thief trying to jump over the fence and break in.
To enter in you have to be born in-- are you? Or are you just religious? Are you just a "church goer"? Are you a part of God's family or just part of a religious organization? A member of a local church but not a member of the family of God?
Have a great day. To live in God's house for eternity, you have to be born into His family.
For further reading:
John 10:1; 14:6
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Coffee Break is a morning devotional written by Lorraine Ezell
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