Sermon 18 ~~~ {The Marks of the New Birth}

“So is every one that is born of the Spirit.”

John 3:8

The first mark, Wesley tells us (Gal 3:26) is faith. It is the foundational mark and it is profoundly life changing, it is deeply rooted in the personal relationship we have with the Lord and is fed by daily spending time with Scripture, meeting in fellowship, meditating on the word and prayer.

He takes time to give out to those who say that to sin habitually is against the concept of the new birth. But what he is really saying here is that one of the marks of the new birth is not sinning. We are dead to sin and alive in Christ. In one of the previous sermons he said sin was still around us but that we didn’t allow it reign in us as we did before the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

He again touches on the fruit of the Spirit and living in joy, peace and love. And then he comes to hope which I preached on Sunday week. Secular hope, real hope and a quasi real hope that many people attending church – a hedging bets with a pick and mix religion that many of our pews are filled with (across all churches)

Sometimes I think I am afraid to repeat myself but Wesley has no fear – he spends a good amount of time in this sermon again pointing out the greatest commandment ” love the Lord your God with all.. and love your neighbour …” I shall be less afraid now!

Finally he touches on good works as being the result of a transformed life – a mark of the new birth not to gain reputation either here or in heaven but that we are compelled to good works in His strength.

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