The Scriptures tell us that to see the Kingdom of God and be able to enter it, we have to be born again. (Unless a man is born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God. You must be born again! John 3:3,7)
Being born again or receiving the right to enter/become a citizen of the Kingdom of God is the greatest event that can take place in a person’s life.
Just as every biological birth is based on a seed, so does the Scriptures tell us about being born again; it is based on a seed and that is in fact the “seed of God”! (Whoever is born of God… His seed remains in him. 1 John 3:9) God sows in the heart of man His seed from which a new creature is born, which will have the nature of God/His way of being.
If we are born of God, of His seed, it is extremely important that we know what this seed contains, what is imprinted in its genetic code, to understand what is the source of this new life. We know that every biological seed has in its composition, on a microbiological scale, all the basic components of the image of the one which it spans from. If we go by the same rule, then the seed of God will have in its configuration all the basic components of His image.
The first chapter of the Gospel of John describes God as one and the same with His Word. (In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. John 1:1) Similarly, Lord Jesus is described as the incarnate Word and one with the Father. (And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us… John 1:14; I and the Father are one. John 10:30)
If God is identified as the Word, as well as His Son, then the seed from which we are born will also have the Word in its configuration. Just as in the biological seed we will not find the eyes, the heart… but only the cells corresponding to them, so in the seed of God will we not find the abounding patience, the kindness… but we will find the embryonic words corresponding to their formation.
If we carefully research the Scriptures, we will quite easily see what these words are: “I will put (my seed) My laws in their hearts, and I will write them in their minds.” (Hebrews 10:16); “…the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, which is the image of God.” (2 Corinthians 4:4) In this way the Word of Christ is sown in the heart of man – His laws, which will grow, reaching maturity through the fruit of the Spirit/ image of Christ. (read about the image of God on page 6)
For example, in the configuration of the seed we will find the teaching: “Do not resist the one who hurts you”, which will grow through the Holy Spirit and develop into the abounding patience, which is part of the Lord’s image.
This specific truth is extremely important in understanding how our new birth takes place, knowing why we must be born of His Word. His Word/laws will have to take live in us, to grow, so that in the end we will merge with Him/be one with the incarnate Word. (I pray… that they may all be one. John 17:21) Let us not be mistaken having the conviction that it is sufficient to only believe in the sacrifice of Lord Jesus. Without receiving His Seed/Word that is planted in our hearts, there will be no new man. This type of faith is dead and does not save us!
The inseparable connection between His Word and the new birth is shown to us by Lord Jesus in the parable of the sower, as well as in many other places. In this parable, the Gospel of the Kingdom/Word of Christ is described as the seed of God, which is sown in the heart of man and from which springs new life. (The seed is the Word of God. Luke 8:11; see also Matthew 13:19)
Apostle James resumes and reinforces this teaching of the Lord, which tells us that man has a share in salvation only if he receives the Word planted in him. (Gently receive the Word planted in you, which can save your souls. James 1:21)
Apostle Peter also reminds us of this seed which is the Word/Gospel of Christ. (You have been born again not of seed which is perishable, but imperishable; and this is the word which was preached to you. 1 Peter 1:23,25)
Apostle Paul as well, just like the other two apostles, tells us that the birth from above is through the Word of Christ/Gospel of the Kingdom. (You do not have parents anymore, for in Christ Jesus I gave birth to you through the gospel. 1 Corinthians 4:15)
Just as three main elements naturally participate in the birth of a plant, these being the earth, the seed, and the water, so in the new birth we find three main elements: the human heart, the Word of Christ, and the Holy Spirit.
The human heart resembles the soil. (The seed which fell on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience. Luke 8:15)
The Word of Christ/His Teachings is the Seed from which life germinates. Out of this seed sprouts new life and has in its composition the elements from which we will grow to reach the stature of a mature man. (I will put My laws (seed)upon their heart, and on their mind I will write them. Hebrews 10:16)
Careful! Let us not confuse the Word of Christ that is the Seed of which the Scriptures tell us that had to come, with the Law of Moses, which was given due to unlawfulness. (Why the Law then? It was added because of unlawfulness until the seed would come to whom the promise had been made. Galatians 3:19)
The Holy Spirit is the third required element. Just as the biological seed does not germinate if it does not have water, neither does the seed of God germinate without the Holy Spirit. (…by the renewal of the Spirit. Titus 3:5; …born of the Spirit. John 3:8)
Earth/The human heart
In the parable of the sower there are four kinds of soil:
- Those who hear the Word of the Kingdom and do not believe it, because they do not understand it. In this case the earth is rock-solid, the heart is hardened. (Matthew 13:19; Luke 8:12)
- Those who hear the Word of the Kingdom and receive it for some time. (The seed fell on rocky ground. Matthew 13:20)
- Those who hear the Word of the Kingdom and receive it, but the worries of our days… (The seed that fell among thorns. Matthew 13:22)
- Those who hear the Word of the Kingdom and receive it in a good heart. The last case shows us a clear, clean soil. (The seed that fell on good ground. Matthew 13:23)
In the first category of people, the heart is hardened and the Seed does not germinate. In the second and third category of people, we find all the elements necessary for germination. The soil, the Seed, and the Holy Spirit are present, which produces the germination of the new life. However, in the second category, the soil does not have enough earth to bring the new life to fruit/maturity; and in the third, the soil is not prepared/cleared. The fourth category is a good heart that receives the sown seed within and then through the renewal and work of the Spirit grows and bears the fruit of the Spirit.
If the Scriptures tell us about many kinds of soils, we must investigate for ourselves to see what kind of soil we are. (Grow a new field, and do not sow among thorns. Jeremiah 4:3)
God’s seed and its composition
As we know, the human embryo includes in itself all the cells that will eventually form the future human that will be born out of it: the heart, the eyes, the brain… everything is coded on a microbiological scale and is put together without missing any detail.
We will see that this is also the case with the seed of God. All the primary components of the Image of God are included in this divine seed. (…the new man, made in the image of God. Ephesians 4:24) It has in its composition all the genetic information/Laws of the Kingdom, or in other words, the commandments of Christ. Every teaching of Christ is a primary component of the image of the Lord. (…the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, which is the image of God. 2 Corinthians 4:3)
God plants in our hearts the Seed “that was to come”/The Word of Christ, or in other words rewrites the genetic configuration of His image. (I will put my laws in their hearts and write them in their minds. Hebrews 10:16)
Below are some genetic information/teachings of the Kingdom that are found in the configuration of God’s Seed:
- Do not resist the one who hurts you. (Matthew 5:39)
- Anyone that wants to sue you and take your coat… (Matthew 5:40)
- Do not judge, lest you be judged. (Matthew 7: 1)
- Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s. (Luke 20:25)
- Beware that you do not slander. (Matthew 18:10)
If someone wants to sue you for your coat, give him your shirt as well. (Luke 6:29) Bless those who curse you. (Matthew 5:44)
The Holy Spirit will germinate this seed that is planted in us; more specifically, it will germinate each teaching and work towards our growth and perfection. Example: The teaching of non-resistance is sown in us and will produce, through the Holy Spirit, its respective fruit: peace, abounding patience, kindness, goodness. (We are transformed in His image, from glory to glory, by the Spirit of the Lord. 2 Corinthians 3:18; The Comforter, the Spirit of truth, will guide you into all truth. John 16:13)
All of the Lord’s teachings are essential, they are part of the “raw material” out of which the finished product is made. No teaching can be set aside. Each is a primary cell, like the cells in the human embryo, which by growth will be a part of the image of the Lord; none is placed in the seed without a purpose.
Each teaching contributes to the formation of the image of Christ in us. The Holy Spirit will not leave us alone and will work with us as we grow. Let us not deceive ourselves – God will not take us into His eternal Kingdom only based on a mental faith in the Lord’s sacrifice, as most believe, but we must be born again of His seed and grow to the stature of fullness in Christ, as it’s written. (…until we all reach the stature of a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ. Ephesians 4:13)
Let us ask ourselves: what would happen if we broke the seed into smaller pieces and removed some teachings from it? Could we still speak of the a birth from God? Let’s imagine what would happen if we fragmented a piece of a biological seed. If we removed the cells that correspond to the liver, heart, or brain, would there still be a birth? Would life germinate out of that seed?
It is crucial to understand that if we do not accept the reign of Christ in all things, not receiving all that He has said, the seed will not be whole and will not germinate. (When anyone hears the Word of the Kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is the one representing the seed sown beside the road. Matthew 13:19)
If we disobey just one commandment, the Spirit will not be able to use that teaching to complete His image in us/the fruit of the Spirit. (The goal of the gospel commandments/teachings is love. 1 Timothy 1:5)
If we do not receive the Lord’s teachings regarding resistance, judgment, self- denial, blessing others… the seed will not contain all the things necessary for the germination of the heavenly life. God renews through the Spirit only those who obey Him. (We are witnesses of these things, as is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who listen to Him. Acts 5:32; …by the renewal of the Spirit. Titus 3:5)
Below are some teachings that are missing from the hearts of many, which are also not accepted by the many who declare and believe that they are “born again.”
- Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s. (Luke 20:25)
- Do not resist the one who hurts you. (Matthew 5:39)
- Bless those who curse you. (Luke 6:28)
- If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; you also ought to wash one another’s feet. (John 13:14)
Self-reflection: Are these teachings too much for you? Is it too much for you to bear them? (Many… after hearing these words, said, “What He’s saying is too much to bear. Who can suffer it?” John 6:60)
We must understand that it will not be possible to be born again of God if we disregard the laws of the Kingdom/the Word of Christ that is planted in our hearts. (Receive with kindness the Word planted in you, which can save your souls. James 1:21; …I will put My laws into their hearts. Hebrews 10:16)
No teaching can be set aside. Each has its own purpose, none was given randomly. Some are to prepare/cleanse the soil of things such as judging, condemning others, the desires of the flesh, the lust of the eyes… and others are to obtain abounding patience, kindness, peace, love…
Only by keeping the commandments of Christ will we be able to strip the old man of his vices and clothe ourselves with the new man, made in the image of God. (Put on the new man, made in the image of God. Ephesians 4:24)
The clothing of the new man must have in its fabric goodness, patience, kindness, love… (Dress with a heart full of mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, abounding patience. But above all, dress with love… Colossians 3:12, 14) This is the wedding garment (the responsibilities of the new man) that I must put on to be like Lord Jesus Christ.
In the following paragraphs, for the purpose of self-study and self-reflection, we shall discuss in more detail the topic of “defamation” and “blessing”. We will take some commandments that will help us eliminate judgment, condemnation, and slander from our lives, as well as some other teachings that shall bring with them into the new life: blessing, kindness, peace…
Denigrating others/Slander is one of the things which is completely forbidden in the Kingdom of God. If we look at the angels that are in God’s presence, they do not dare to break the Kingdom’s law concerning judgment and slander. They do not dare to judge even Satan, even less utter a reproach against him. (Yet Michael the archangel, when fighting with the devil over the body of Moses, did not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, “The Lord rebuke you!” Jude 1:9; Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring no railing accusation against them before the Lord. 2 Peter 2:11).
We can see that it is in our nature to judge one another, to condemn one another, and then to speak negatively of the one we judge. Most people fall into the category of those judged; starting with those in our family to those who govern us. Many of us justify ourselves with this statement: “But when I speak ill of someone, I am only telling the truth.” However, the Holy Scriptures forbid us to
speak ill of anyone. (Remind them not to speak ill of anyone. Titus 3:2)
To observe how much we are affected by slandering, we must examine ourselves in detail. Let us check ourselves for a few days in a row and note in a notebook, at the end of each day, the people we spoke ill of. This experiment will show us where we truly are. If you plan on honestly checking yourself, you might be surprised to see that you have a life predominated by evil thinking and speaking.
We must note that even before we speak ill of someone, we do many things that are otherwise not so noticeable. If we do not pay close attention to them, they will inevitably lead us to defamation.
Before we speak ill of someone, the first thing we do is to judge that person, disregarding the commandment that we should not judge anyone. (Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Luke 6:37) Many times we call on another friend to strengthen our judgment. The second thing that comes after a judgment is condemnation, which comes because we disobey another commandment of the Lord. (Do not condemn, lest you be condemned. Luke 6:37) A third thing is unforgiveness. (Forgive and be forgiven. Luke 6:37; If one has cause to complain to another, forgive one another. Colossians 3:13)
And then, for the sin to be as complete as possible, we disregard the Lord’s command concerning evil speaking. (Beware of slander. Matthew 18:10) If we examine ourselves sincerely, we will find that most of us, as soon as we find an opportunity, will trumpet to others about the ones we have judged and condemned.
We will pass on our bitter envy to others, who in turn will pass it forwards, thus smearing many. However, “He who slanders his neighbour is a fool”. (Proverbs 11:12)
To inherit the Kingdom of God, we will have to give up this grave sin, to clear our soil, to remove it out of our hearts, since we know that slanderers will not inherit the Kingdom of God. (1 Corinthians 6:10)
We still will not succeed if we do not first give up judgment, condemnation, and if we do not learn to forgive those who wrong us. (Bear with one another, forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you. Colossians 3:13)
For the one who wants to live in the Kingdom of God, another essential thing he must do is to break off all friendships with those who practice defamation, even if they are brothers or sisters in the congregation. (Have no connection with anyone who, though calls himself a “brother,” is… a slanderer. 1 Corinthians 5:11, 13) We must do this because this sin contaminates like a plague. (Evil deeds spoil good habits. 1 Corinthians 15:33; Get out of their midst, and be separate from them, said the Lord; do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you. 2 Corinthians 6:17)
Blessing is one of the upper things prepared by God for us to walk in. (If you have risen with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is; set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. Colossians 3:1)
Blessing is the opposite of slandering. Blessing excludes slander and vice versa, we will not be able to keep both. (Out of the same mouth comes both blessing and cursing! My brethren, it cannot be so! Does fresh water and bitter water spring from the same source? James 3:10)
In order to bless, we must clean the earth free of the sin of speaking evil; let us not sow blessing among the thorns of slander. (Grow a new field, and do not sow among thorns! Jeremiah 4:3) We will need to be guided by the Holy Spirit and keep the Lord’s commandments regarding blessing. Here are some of them:
- Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you. (Matthew 5:43) Bless those who persecute you. (Romans 12:14)
- Bless, for you have been called to this. (1 Peter 3:9)
- Do not resist the one who harms you. Anyone that wants to sue you for your coat… (Matthew 5: 39-41) Forgive and you shall be forgiven. (Luke 6:37)
We will be able to bless only if we stop slandering. We will have to let go of anger, judgment, stop condemning, stop opposing the one who hurts us, be willing to allow the one who takes things through force, forgive him, and if he is hungry, feed even our enemy…
The attitude of blessing even the one who persecutes you is not in the nature of the natural man, it does not come through the self, but only by keeping the Word
This type of attitude towards those who hurt us is strictly related to that love which has not reached the human mind. The old “man” will never do such a thing, for it is complete madness and nonsense for him.
If we examine ourselves sincerely, many of us will find that they have not learned to speak well and that they have (perhaps) never blessed the one who hurt them. They will find that they have not kept the commandments concerning evil speaking, nor the commandment of blessing. (Love your enemies, bless those who curse you. Matthew 5:43-44)
Check yourself: Do you bless or slander? Do not deceive yourself in believing that you will be able to bless while still being angry, judging, condemning… These will only cause you unrest, along with evil speech/slander, not blessing. (James 3:16)
Ask the most serious questions: Is the seed that was sown in your heart the seed of God? Have you received the Lord’s commandments/laws regarding defamation/blessing? If you have received them, are you keeping them? Did they bear fruit? Check yourself thoroughly for a week or two and you will see where you are.
Examine yourself carefully: When you speak evil, are you scolded by the Holy Spirit? Analyze yourself if you live the new life that you have been called to, because many of us are called to bless, but so few do it. (Bless; for this were you called, so that you may inherit a blessing. 1 Peter 3:9)
If you speak ill of the government, those in politics, the people in the public health system, the neighbours… and those who hurt you in one way or another, it means that things have not occurred yet, it means that the new life has not begun! (If any man is in Christ, he is a new creature: the old things are passed away; behold, they have become new; and all these things are of God. 2 Corinthians 5:17-18)
We must understand that for the man who is born from above, of God, defamation or any other sin are just accidents, not a way of life! (Whoever is born of God does not sin. 1 John 3:9)
Lord Jesus tells us that only if we hate the old “man”, if we abandon the old things, only then will we be able to start a new life in the Kingdom of God, and this will be a life of discipleship/enslavement unto Him. (If anyone comes to Me and does not hate… even his very life, he cannot be My disciple. Luke 14:26)
The Lord will enter with us into the New Covenant only when we give up our own will and accept Him as our Master, obeying His teachings. From this moment begins the new life, a life of discipleship. We become His disciples from the day we accept Him in all things as Teacher and Lord.
This is the moment when God begins His work of perfection and will complete it only if we remain faithful to it. (I am confident that He who has begun this good work in you will finish it. Philippians 1:6)
To be a disciple of Christ means to be enrolled in His school, to learn from Him the new things from above and to assimilate them, since they are strictly necessary for our life in the Kingdom. We become His disciples from the very first day of school, from the first day of the new life.
In the school of Christ, we are God’s slaves, we are subject to Him in all things, in order to reach our sanctification. (You have become slaves of God, your fruit is sanctification, and the end is eternal life. Romans 6:22) Being born again is the beginning of the disciple’s life. The result of God’s discipleship and the work of the Spirit is the image of God in us.
Questions for self-reflection
- Ask yourself: am I born again? Do I meet the conditions for being born again? Have I given up the things of this world? Have I entered into a covenant with the Lord? Are there still the pleasures of the world in my life: the world’s television, going by the seaside…? (Do not love the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him: for the things of the world are not of the Father, but are of the world. John 2:15-16)
- Question yourself: am I subject to God’s appointed authorities, do I avoid paying taxes, is it defamation or blessing that I practice?
- Have I sought the Kingdom of righteousness, peace, and love as a hidden treasure? Did I arrive at the Door of the Kingdom, hear the teachings of Christ, and did I accept/receive them?
- Did I receive the entire Word that was sown in me, or just fragments?
- If I have entered into the New Covenant, did I tell Him that I would listen and do everything He said? Did I promise to keep all the laws he has planted in my heart? Are these the laws of righteousness, peace, and love? (Behold, the days come, says the Lord, that I will make a new covenant; I will put my laws in their minds … Hebrews 8:8-10)
- Have I renounced my own will, emptied myself, letting the Word planted in my heart work? (Luke 9:23) Or was it sown among thorns? (Jeremiah 4:3)
- Is He the Lord of my life or am I just at the point of calling Him Lord, Lord, without doing everything He says?
- Is there any teaching of the Lord that I do not keep? (check with: Matthew 12:36; Matthew 18:9, 10; Titus 3:2; Matthew 5:38-48; Luke 9:23; Luke 14:26)
- Is there a commandment that I don’t agree with? (check with John 13: 13- 17; Mark 10:11-12; Matthew 19:9; Matthew 22:21)
- Do I meet the criteria of becoming a disciple of the Lord? (And whosoever does not bear his cross and come after me, cannot be My disciple. Luke 14:26-27)
We ask you, as you are standing, alone with yourself, to check what situation you are in at the moment. Your eternity depends on this!
It is good to examine ourselves in the light of the Word and to ask ourselves what type of covenant/birth we had. What are the results? Is the image of God in us? Do we consciously work to become more and more like the Lord? Can the fruits of the Spirit’s work be seen? Are we persecuted/troubled because of righteousness? Do not be mistaken in believing that if you practice the teachings of the group you have joined, you will as such satisfy God. He will only sit at the table with those who will be just like Him.
If you have not yet sought righteousness as a treasure, start now. Then let God lead your steps in a clean assembly of people so that you can grow healthily towards perfection! (Flee the youthful lusts, and follow after righteousness, faith, love, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart. 2 Timothy 2:22)