For this who may need a refresher, a tip from LaShawn Barber.

Reading this Newsweek story for a Pajamas Media TV segment I’m taping in an hour tomorrow, one paragraph stopped me cold (emphasis added):

“If this week’s exit polls tell us anything about religion, they remind us that there are tens of millions of voters in this country who believe in God, read their Scripture, pray, regularly attend a house of worship—and do not consider themselves born-again Christians.”

OK. For the record, there is no such thing as a Christian who has not been born again. To say you believe in God, go to church every Sunday, etc., doesn’t mean you’re a Christian. People worship all kind of gods and go to church for various reasons. The questions is, is Christ your Lord and Savior? If someone has been forgiven, he has been born again, no matter what cultural or social connotations the term born again (white fundamentalist Bible-thumpers?) has been burdened with. Those saved by grace through faith in Christ understand what the term means biblically.

Born again or rebirth in Christ refers to the process that takes place when Christ saves/forgives someone. Here’s the imagery: the former man was crucified with Christ, and the new man was resurrected with Christ when he rose from the dead. The new man is renewed, regenerated…re-born. Day by day, God guides us, chastises us, and loves us, molding and shaping us into the image of his Son.

If you believe the Lord Jesus Christ suffered and died for your sins, and you trust in this sacrifice alone for the forgiveness of your sins, born again applies to you, whether you’re white, black, blue, Baptist, Presbyterian, Lutheran, Roman Catholic, or whatever else they’ve got.

I’m not quite sure what Newsweek writers think the term means.  Perhaps this usage of it shows how many people in church go through all the motions, but don’t see themselves as born-again.  (Although the usual case is that it’s the other way around; they go through the motions, never have a relationship with Jesus, and do consider themselves born-again.)  Perhaps this is the media adding its own connotations to the term.

Whatever the case, LaShawn gets it right.

Filed under: ChristianityDougMediaReligion

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