The imperativeness of the new birth
(Arthur Pink, 1952)
"You must be born again!" John 3:7
The imperativeness of the new birth is evident from the fact that man is a fallen creature. Originally he was made in the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:26), fitted to enjoy fellowship with Him. But upon his apostasy, he . . .
was alienated from his Maker,
became unsuited unto the Holy One,
and fled from Him.
The natural man is . . .
a slave of Satan,
dead in sin,
and, therefore, it is no marvel that he needs to be born again.
He is devoid of . . .
any love to God,
any delight in Him,
any relish for heavenly things,
any ability to perform spiritual acts.
A miracle of grace, then, must be wrought upon him before he is qualified to enter the Father's house. Heaven is a prepared place for a prepared people — for those who have been made "fit to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light" (Colossians 1:12), for without holiness no man shall see the Lord (Hebrews 12:14).
An unregenerated person would be entirely out of harmony with the ineffable purity of the celestial courts, and could no more enjoy their company and activities, than could a deaf man enjoy an oratorio, or a blind man enjoy the beauties of an exquisite sunset. A spiritual kingdom requires a spiritual nature, and in order to the acquisition of that, the natural man must be regenerated — divinely regenerated, for the creature can no more quicken himself than he could give himself a natural being.
Regeneration is no . . .
mere outward reformation,
process of education, or
even religious cultivation.
No, it consists of a radical change of heart and transformation of character — the communication of a gracious and holy principle, producing new desires, new capacities, and a new life. Then, do not marvel that in order thereto, a man must be born from above.