(Natural, Ceremonial, and Spiritual)
By, Linda DeSilva
An approaching birthday leads to recalling the past and planning the future. Mine is this Sunday, so I have been doing just that. Now, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II celebrates two birthdays a year – doubtless with many memories. Her actual birth date is Wednesday, 21st April, 1926. As Sovereign, however, her official birthday is held in June, with much pomp and ceremony and, usually, more settled weather. Fortunately, two annual birthdays do not make her twice as old!
On one occasion, Jesus himself spoke of an all-important second birthday to a prominent religious leader who came to see Him. At this point in the life of Jesus, He was under much criticism from the Scribes and Pharisees, so it was advisable for this visitor to maintain anonymity. “After dark one evening, he (Nicodemus) came to speak with Jesus. “Rabbi”, he said, “We all know that God has sent you to teach us. Your miraculous signs are evidence that God is with you.” In response to this flattering approach, Jesus said: ‘I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.” When Nicodemus questioned Jesus as to how an old man could once again enter his mother’s womb and be born again, Jesus gave various illustrations from nature to explain that everyone who believes in the Son of God will have eternal, imperishable life – spiritual rebirth in a new dimension through faith in Him. Then, Jesus summed it up in the well-known words of John 3:16: “For God loved the world so much that He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.” (See John 3: 1 – 21.)
Queen Elizabeth’s ceremonial birthday does not change her age or rank. In contrast, the second birth which Jesus offers is the gift of eternal life – life which never ends – everlasting, imperishable life with Him in the Kingdom of God. This life in Christ which begins here on earth and continues throughout eternity is available to all who believe and receive Him as Saviour and Lord!
Born once – eternal death! Born twice – eternal life!
Have YOU accepted God’s gift of eternal life? If not, do so TODAY!