Saturday, January 6, 2018

New Beginnings: Triplets of Rebirth

Blank Document: Create. A thrill of anticipation flutters in my heart when I hit those buttons on Word, knowing that God can fill that clean slate with the words He chooses as I yield to His Holy Spirit. I’m often surprised and delighted by the thoughts and word pictures He creates when I don’t clutter the page with my own preconceived notions.

This time of year has more than its share of new beginnings. In many parts of the world, freshly fallen snow creates a pristine landscape, cleansed of yesterday’s grime and soot, coating tree branches with feathery plumes and sparkling crystal, and blanketing downy fields that invite fresh footprints.

Those who celebrate Christmas with gift giving are enjoying their new presents – perhaps the novel experience of an exotic fragrance, the taste and texture of undiscovered gourmet treats, the exciting look of the latest fashion accessory, or even the crisp, cool feel of new sheets. All across the globe people are viewing the first page of their new calendar or journal, and many of us who read devotionals are marveling that once again it is January of a new year. 

Our pastor likes to say that the New Year, as well as the start of each month and even the dawning of each new day, is like an automatic reset button. Praise God that His mercies are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22-23), and that no matter what mistakes we have made and what sins we have committed, He is quick to forgive us and to cleanse us from our sins if we confess them and repent (I John 1:9)

In our daily Bible reading, we are back to Genesis, contemplating the Creator of all, the self-existent One Who simply was “in the beginning.” (Genesis 1:1; John 1:1). Without Him was nothing made that is made (John 1:3). As we have seen in our study of triplets in Scripture, the attributes of God, the Names of Jesus, types of worship, and works of His creation can be described in groups of three. This pattern continues as we look at new beginnings of the earth and of human life. 

The Bible describes three new beginnings for the earth and all it contains, even though the earth will in one form or another continue eternally (Psalm 78:69; Ecclesiastes 1:4). First, God created the heavens and earth, as well as light, celestial bodies, water, plants, animals, and man (Genesis 1). But once Adam and Eve disobeyed God, sin and death entered their world, and even the earth was cursed and fell into corruption (Genesis 3:17-19; Hebrews 1:11-12; Romans 8:22). 

The second beginning for the earth was the flood, in which God caused cataclysmic changes on the earth and its oceans and destroyed most of the earth’s inhabitants because of man’s wickedness (Genesis 7). 

The third beginning for the earth will be renovation by fire, occurring after Christ’s return and His reign in the Millennial Kingdom. Even the very elements of the earth will then burn with an intense heat (2 Peter 3:10) in preparation for the new heavens and new earth (2 Peter 3:13). Christ will make all things new (Revelation 21:5), purging the earth from the corruption of the curse, sin and death. 

For God’s children, human life also has three beginnings: conception, birth, and being born again. For every human being, life begins at the moment of conception, at that defining moment when the union of sperm and egg result in a reassortment of genetic material from both the father and mother, containing all the instructions needed to ensure development of a unique person with specific physical and emotional traits.

Everyone on earth was born on a specific year, date and time, with our birthday marking our beginning in this world, that moment when we first cried out to announce our presence. Pediatricians note the newborn’s weight, length, and head circumference and track these three measurements throughout early development. But we were born “few of days and full of trouble,” (Job 14:1) with only a very brief, limited time (James 4:14) to overcome and subdue our sin nature and to honor God with our life.

This can happen only if we have a new spiritual beginning – that moment in time when we are born again (John 3:3-8). That rebirth requires that we come to the end of our natural self and die to our sin nature (1 Corinthians 15:31), realizing that we are sinners in need of a Savior (Romans 3:23-28), and that without Him, we can do nothing (John 15:5)
Only when we place our faith in the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15: 3-4) as the only way to Heaven (John 14:6) can we be reborn as a new creation in Him (Hebrews 12:24; Galatians 6:15; 2 Corinthians 5:17).

God has created each born-again believer with the potential to use our own peculiar characteristics to glorify Him, no matter how the world perceives us (Ephesians 2:10; Philippians 2:13). What others might see as a defect is like clay in God’s hands to be fashioned into a special vessel consecrated to His purpose (Isaiah 29:16; 64:8; Romans 9:21). At the moment of salvation, the Holy Spirit indwells us and equips us with at least one spiritual gift to be used to encourage fellow believers (1 Corinthians 12).

A new beginning awaiting all believers is the Rapture, when we will have new bodies, a new address, and a new name (Revelation 2:17). Our bodies will be like that of the resurrected Christ (Philippians 3:21), and we will never die, age, or become ill. Instead of pain, sorrow, and tears, we will experience vitality, joy, and a new song. (Isaiah 35:10; Revelation 5:9; 21:4). Our new home will be in our own mansion, (John 14:2) in Heaven, in the New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:2)

As the New Year begins, I’m eagerly anticipating what God has in store for this year, and even more eagerly awaiting the new beginning of the Rapture! It could be this year or even this very day – may we be ready by knowing and serving Him! 

© 2013 Laurie Collett
Reposted from the archives


Frank E. Blasi said...

Dear Laurie,
A brilliant piece about the triple phase concept of Conception, Birth, and Regeneration before a human can be complete in himself. Why didn't I think of that?
But there are invisible forces out there which are hell-bent in preventing people from experiencing Regeneration. And according to one Creation website I have been looking at lately, one of the main reasons why a large percentage of young people of church-going parents leave the church altogether is because they were not rooted into the truth of Divine Creation, but instead were allowed to believe in Theistic Evolution instead.
As I look further into the truth of Divine Creation in 6x24 hour days, the more I'm convinced that Darwinism in any form was purposely designed to keep sinners from the knowledge of God and towards atheism.
An excellent blog. God bless.

Brenda said...

Lovely post Laurie,
all truth is within the scriptures and there are many things, as you have written, associated with the number three.
There were three particularly lovely gifts that I had for Christmas. One was a lovely new gold chain necklace for my gold keys with Jesus' name on that I always wear. The other two were beautiful table lamps, one a lighthouse and the other an elephant stood upon three books.
God bless you and your family Laurie in 2018

Laurie Collett said...

Dear Frank,
I agree -- Darwinism separates men from God by denying His power. I got angry last night when my husband and I attended a meeting of the local Fossil Club (he is an avid collector, and I also enjoy finding specimens on the beach). The speaker was spouting nonsense about raptor dinosaurs evolving into modern day raptor birds, and spoke of the "evolution of flight" as occurring when flightless birds flapped their wings hard enough to run up a very steep incline, eventually taking flight. How much simpler and believable to trust that God created fowl of the air and designed them to fly! In answering questions, she also agreed with a college youth that given enough time and selection pressure, man could evolve bird-like claws on his hands. And yet there is no recorded history of any observed example of evolution. It is truly sad that bright minds are being led astray by devious fables, designed to diminish or even negate God.
Thanks as always for your insightful comments. God bless,

Laurie Collett said...

Thank you, Brenda! These sound like lovely and meaningful gifts you received. The necklace reminds me of the verse that His yoke is easy, and His burden is light. The lamps remind me of His Word, which is a lamp unto our feet.
May you and your loved ones have all blessings in 2018 and until He comes again.

Donald Fishgrab said...

Praise God that new creature is not just refurbished, but all things are become new, and all are of Christ. As I John 1:9 tells us, If we confess our sin, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sin and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. No trace remains, so we get to start fresh, and his mercies are new every morning. We don't need to keep asking forgiveness for the same old sins, but can focus on living a new life today.

Great post.

Laurie Collett said...

Amen, Donald! Praise God that He gives us a new start each day when we ask Him to forgive our sins. Praise God that He no longer remembers our confessed sins, for they are absolved by the righteousness of Christ.
Thanks as always for your Scriptural insights, and God bless,

Brenda said...

That is right Laurie, and I have always loved elephants as they remind me of 'strength', and they are very loving, family creatures.

Laurie Collett said...

Amen, Brenda, and the lighthouse could also symbolize our Tower and Fortress, and the Light of His Word.

Brenda said...

I think that too Laurie.

Laurie Collett said...

Amen! God bless you, Brenda.