Born of Water and of the Spirit

John 3:5-8 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, You must be born again. The wind blow where it listed, and thou hear the sound thereof, but cannot tell whence it come, and whither it go: so is every one that is born of the Spirit. 

‘Born of water and of the Spirit’ does not refer to the natural birth, for Nicodemus already had this birth and he was told he had to be born again of both water and Spirit. Not water baptism; all Old Testament saints were saved and born again without water baptism (Heb. 11:1-40; Rom. 3:23-25).

Water is used in a figurative sense of salvation (John 4:14; Isa. 12:3), of the Spirit baptism (John 7:37-39), and of cleansing by the Word of God (John 15:3; Eph. 5:26). Since men are cleansed and born again by the Word (Jas. 1:18; 1Pet. 1:23), it is clear that being born of water means being born again by the Word of God.

‘That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.’ This is a fundamental law in both natural and spiritual realms; that is, we live after the flesh or after the Spirit (Rom. 8:1-13; Gal. 5:16-26).

‘So is every one that is born of the Spirit’ as the natural man hears the wind, so the man who is born again hears the voice of the Spirit.

Rightly Dividing Truth

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.  2 Timothy 2:15 KJV

The Word of God must be studied so that our love may abound more and more in knowledge and in all judgment Php. 1:9 and should be read slowly, prayerfully, frequently, reverently, meditatively, searchingly, perseveringly, believingly, and obediently.

The Greek word orthotomeo means to Rightly Divide the Truth, to set straight and handle right. It means not only to give the true meaning, but also the correct application to the various times and classes of people. Truth must be divided dispensationally, prophetically, historically, and with regard for classes and subjects. The chief fundamental principle of interpretation is to gather from the Scriptures themselves the precise meaning the writers intended to convey. We must exercise common sense and reason, applying the same principles and grammatical rules to the Bible as we do to other books. One should take the Bible literally wherever it is at all possible. When the language cannot be taken literally, we know it is figurative. We should then get the literal truth conveyed by the figurative language.

The word Interpret means to state the true sense of God’s message as He expresses it; that is, give to the reader the exact statements of Scripture without change to prove every question discussed; to state exactly what God says and where He says it. The science or art of interpretation and explanation is called Hermeneutics and comes from the Greek ermeneuo, meaning “to explain,” “to expound,” and “to interpret”. It is the science that establishes and classifies the principles, methods and rules by which the meaning of the author’s language is ascertained.

The interpretation of any piece of literature will depend upon the nature of the work under consideration. Poetry, history, fiction, and each form of human expression require a different set of rules. The rules of writing when interpreting a work of fiction would not be suitable for history. Accordingly, the rules that govern Bible interpretation depend upon the character of its separate kinds of writings, just as is true of different kinds of writings in other books.

The Word of God should not be changed to be understood, there is no mysteries, secrets, or hidden meanings veiled in spiritual language and scriptures does not have many different meanings and different interpretation as some tend to claim.

The modern way of interpreting the Bible is to change the meaning of what is written to suit one’s fancy and to harmonize the Bible with one’s own theories. It transgresses every known sensible principle of true interpretation and places man as the authority above God concerning the Bible.

For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book,  If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.  Revelation 22:18-19 KJV

Since the Bible is like other books in that it is written in human language, it must be interpreted like all other literature. If heavenly, supernatural, and spiritual truths are written in human language, we must understand such truths on this basis. One must understand the words and expressions in the Bible the same as if they were found outside of it. There can be no special Bible logic, rhetoric, or grammar. The laws of grammar apply to the Bible as they do to other writings.

Christ and His disciples prove this method of interpretation. In about 400 quotations from the Old Testament in the New Testament, the phrase “It is written” is held as all that is necessary to prove the sense of God’s message. This will settle every point of doctrine today if we are to be Christ-like. Not one example is found in Scripture where the plain literal sense of Scripture was done away with by the allegorical, mystical, speculative, spiritualizing, and symbolizing methods so prominent today. We must lay aside all such methods if a true knowledge of the Bible is to be gained.

The Bible is clear in itself when all traditions, wrong interpretations, manifold changes, and spiritualizing of Scripture are abandoned. The average person is blind to many simple truths of Scripture because they have been overlaid with so many human traditions and interpretations designed to serve a church, a party, or some personal fancy.

The Bible is an inspired revelation Rom. 16:25; Col. 1:26; Rev. 1:1 from God; a revelation is an uncovering or unveiling so that all can see alike what was previously covered or hidden. The only excuse any man would have for not seeing something that was uncovered for him is his willful refusal to look. Anything that is revealed is clear, or the purpose of the revelation has failed.

How that by revelation He made known unto me the mystery; Ephesians 3:3 KJV

All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness 2Timothy 3:16 KJV

 

 

The Parable of the Leaven

Another parable spoke He unto them; The kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven, which a woman took, and hid in three measures of meal, till the whole was leavened. Mat. 13:33 KJV

The kingdom of Heaven here is “like” leaven (sour dough) that is always used in a bad sense in Scripture, as meal is in a good sense. Therefore, the common interpretation of leaven converting the world is the exact opposite of the true interpretation of the leaven corrupting the meal. Note the use of leaven in Scripture:

In the Old Testament leaven is used to portray the evil nature of the sinner: Exodus 12:8, 15-20; 34:25; Levitikus 2:11; 6:17; 10:12 These last three passages refer to leaven being forbidden in certain sacrifices. Only in one sacrifice was it used in Levitikus 7:12-13 and here it signifies that though the believer has made peace with God through the work of another (Christ), there are still human traits and selfishness in him which must be continually purged by growth in grace.

In the New Testament leaven is used in four ways: first, the leaven of the Pharisees which was external religion, legalism, and hypocrisy; Mt. 23:14-28; Lk. 12:1 second, the leaven of the Sadducees, which was skepticism as to the supernatural and the teachings of the Scriptures on resurrection, angels, and spirits; Mt. 22:23-39; Acts 23:8 third, the leaven of the Harridans, which was materialism, a mixture of religion and worldliness, a political religion; Mk. 8:15 fourth, the leaven of both Pharisees and Sadducees as to their evil doctrines and practices. Mt. 16:11-12; 23:14, 16, 23-28

This illustrates how the kingdom of heaven teachings and the program of God in this age would become corrupted by false doctrines and unscriptural programs until the whole is corrupted. Lk. 18:8; 1Tim. 4:1-8; 2Tim. 3:5; 4:3-4; 2Pet. 3:3-4  A woman is a common symbol of evil in the moral or religious sphere and when used figuratively in an evil sense ‘she’ represents wickedness, fallacy, uncleanness, and unfaithfulness, Lam. 1:17 harlotry, Ezek. 16:15,22,26,28-59; 23:1-49; 36:17; Hos. 1:2; 2:2-17; 3:1; Rev. 17 wickedness, Zech. 5:5-11; Rev. 17:5 and false religion. Rev. 17 Thus, in a bad ethical sense a woman always symbolizes something wrong or out of place religiously.  Zech. 5:7-8; Rev. 2:20; 17:1-18  When used in a good sense women represent Israel, cp Gen. 37:9-10 with Rev. 12; Ezek. 16 the two covenants, Gal. 4:21-31 and righteousness and purity. 2Cor. 11:2; Rev. 19:7-8 A meal symbolizes the Word of God. Mt. 4:4; Jn. 6:47-63 and the three hidden measures of the meal illustrates all false teachings, religious programs, and professed Christian lives that seek to hide behind the Word of God (Christ as the Bread of Life and the Word of God Mt. 4:4; Jn. 6:47-63; Jn. 1:1).

The parable illustrates how the kingdom of Heaven would become like leaven, which a woman uses to corrupt Christ and His teachings. Both Christ and the Word of God are being corrupted today by the false church and its teachings. These teachers dominate the realm of profession and use it to deceive people by exalting their own words above the Word of God and their own leaders above Christ; by making the people feel that their church is infallible and that obedience to it and its dogmas is better than obedience to civil governments and by many comparable doctrines contrary to the Bible, thus corrupting the truth through the realm of profession.

Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaven the whole lump? Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us: Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. 1Cor. 5:6-8 KJV

The Parable of the Sower

And he spoke many things unto them in parables, saying, Behold, a sower went forth to sow… Mat 13:3 KJV

This parable pictures the classes of hearers in the kingdom of Heaven – the whole course of this age of grace, portraying the reception of the Word of God in different hearts and the results that follow.  The sower illustrates the Son of Man (Christ) and the seed illustrates the Word of the kingdom.

And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up … When any one hear the word of the kingdom, and understand it not, then come the wicked one, and catch away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side. Mat 13:4,19 KJV

The seed sown on wayside ground, being eaten by the fowls illustrates a class of people who hear the Word of the kingdom and refuse to obey it because of indifference and lack of understanding. The devil immediately catches away the Word sown in the heart lest it should germinate and bring forth fruit. 2 Cor. 4:4

Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth: And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away …  But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that hear the word, and anon with joy receive it; Yet hath he not root in himself, but endure for a while: for when tribulation or persecution arise because of the word, by and by he is offended.  Mat 13:5-6, 20-21 KJV

The seed sown on stony ground, which immediately sprang up because it did not have much depth of earth, illustrates a class of people who receive the Word with joy, but they are shallow in their experience and the seed, because of lack of preparation in the ground, cannot go deep enough to take root to stand. In time of trouble and persecution, such persons are offended. They stumble and reject the Word as quickly as they receive it. Mt. 18:6; 2 Tim. 3:13

And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them … He also that received seed among the thorns is he that hear the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he become unfruitful. Mat 13:7, 22 KJV

The seed sown on thorny ground, which was choked by the thorns and became unfruitful, illustrates a class of people who hear the Word and permit it to be choked by a love for the world, the cares of life, and the deceitfulness of riches, so that it becomes unfruitful. Rom. 12:1-3; 2 Tim. 4:10; Jas. 4:1-7; 1 Jn. 2:15-17

But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixty-fold, some thirty-fold. But he that received seed into the good ground is he that hear the word, and understand it; which also bear fruit, and bring forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. Mat 13:8, 23 KJV

The seed sown on good ground, which brought forth fruit illustrates a class of people who hear the Word and permit it to have free course and bring forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixty-fold, and some thirty-fold. This class puts forth an effort to understand the Word and to get out of the personal life all the hindrances symbolized by the hard, stony, and thorny ground. The words “hundredfold,” “sixty-fold,” and “thirty-fold” do not teach degrees of Christians, but degrees of fruit-bearing by Christians and that depends upon the quality of ground in which the seed is sown and the effectiveness of care and cultivation.

Who hath ears to hear, let him hear … Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower. Mat 13:9, 18 KJV

I choose to hear the Word of God and be obedient to what I hear so that my life can bring forth fruit and I can live a Godly life!