“Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again,
he cannot see the kingdom of God… unless one is born of water
and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.”
All of us are familiar with these verses, but we are not so familiar with what they actually mean. To state it simply, being born-again is not the goal, but the first step towards the goal: the goal is the Kingdom of God. We could state it like this: the narrow gate is not the goal, but it is the first thing we must pass through in order to enter the narrow path.
Our goal, and God’s goal, is not the gate, or we would not need a path. Though we begin our journey by entering the gate, the goal is at the end of the path, not at the beginning of the path.
Source: "Embrace the Cross" by Chip Brogden.
Shamelessly stolen from Frank Viola:
The truth is, “all you need is love” was NOT Jesus’ central message. (That belongs to another person whose first name begins with a “J”.)
The concept that Jesus came to teach humans on Planet Earth to be nicer, kinder, and more loving toward each other sounds good to twenty-first century ears, but it makes Jesus out to be someone He was not.
The central message of Jesus Christ was the blistering, high-voltage, deeply-subversive, earth-shaking GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM.
That gospel included a radical call to forsake the present world system – its values, its ways, its philosophy, its language and style of speech, its pleasures – and even one’s own life.
And to surrender that life to Jesus of Nazareth, this world’s true Lord. Then to live out this kingdom life with others who have embraced the gospel of the kingdom.
Jesus’ teaching about love was given to those who already submitted to His absolute lordship and who became part of His kingdom.
Love – the way Jesus defined it (which isn’t the same way the world understands it) is how the kingdom of God operates.
Love always requires losing your life, laying it down, denying self.
However, a person cannot love in the biblical sense unless they first forsake all (repent), entrust their lives to Jesus (faith), and receive His own divine life into their beings (the new birth).
Because the nature of divine life is love, and one cannot receive this kind of divine love outside of receiving Christ and having His Spirit indwell them.
Sure, they can be nice, kind, pleasant, and even giving. But they are incapable of the divine love (apage) that the New Testament talks so much about.
The following resources are accessible to anyone in any country.
They exist for you to consume and share.
Seven Resources for Spreading the Insurgence
The Gospel of the Kingdom (blog series)
The Insurgence (podcast)
Insurgence: Reclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom (the book: print, audio, and digital versions)
Everlasting Domain: Restoring the Kingdom Message (Master Class)
Kingdom of God (YouTube playlist)
The Gospel of the Kingdom (website)
The Insurgence (website)
I choose to remain anonymous because it's NOT about me. But, if you wanna email me, I go by Doc.