John 3:5 – Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter the kingdom of God.”
The key to entering the kingdom of God is the Spirit of God. It is the Holy Spirit who carries the mandate to bring forth in the earth a “new creation.” The natural man does not receive the Spirit of God because the kingdom is spiritual and not natural. Many try reasoning in their minds how to be accepted by God. This is the height of folly because God will not allow any to know Him and His ways simply through natural reasoning. All of the world religions are based upon self-effort in trying to reach God. The basis of the “faith once delivered to the saints” is rooted in God reaching out to us. He has done this through His Holy Spirit. The Spirit caused the Christ child to be formed in Mary’s womb. It was the Spirit who came upon Jesus at His baptism. It was the Holy Spirit that empowered Jesus to heal the sick and cast out demons. The Holy Spirit strengthened the Lord Jesus to endure the cross for each of us. Finally, the Father promised Jesus that the Holy Spirit would be given to all who would believe in Him.
Nicodemus, a religious leader in Israel, came to Jesus in the dark of night. He knew in his heart that Jesus had been sent by God, confirmed by the signs that followed Jesus’ life. Nicodemus only knew the Law as a way to God. Jesus began to share that the true way of entrance into the kingdom of God was through a new birth, and not by attempting to keep the Jewish Law. Jesus told Nicodemus that it is by water and the Spirit that one must be born again. Water speaks of the natural birth process. Baptism was not a new thought to the Jews, for they had many kinds of baptisms. Being born of the Spirit was a new dimension for this Pharisee to grasp.
Many try entering into a relationship with God through various kinds of religious works. But Jesus’ words help us understand that only by the Spirit of God can one be “born into the Father’s Kingdom.” Today, are you resting fully upon a relationship with the Holy Spirit for your entrance and life in the Kingdom of God? Or is it self-effort and natural reasoning which drives you toward spiritual things?
Our greatest need is to increase our dependence upon God’s Spirit. He wants us to let go of all self-effort and fully embrace a relationship of intimacy with Him. God, as promised to Jesus, has sent His Spirit to be received by all those who have chosen to put their trust in the Lord Jesus. If you have been “born of the Spirit,” then get to know Him in ever deepening ways. Always inquire of His will and direction in your life. Learn to discern His voice in your inner man.
Father, I ask for an increase in my awareness of the need for Your Holy Spirit’s presence. I ask that I might be led more by Your Spirit and less by my own natural reasoning in my day-to-day life.