At the Marburg cemetery, there is a gravestone with a notable inscription: “Here rests R.R., born on…, born the second time on…, entering the rest of the people of God on….” It can hardly be assumed that the deceased would have written this inscription himself beforehand, but his relatives may have heard him speak of how he came to living faith in Christ. He may even have spoken about which day the gospel of Christ became alive to him. That is why this inscription was then put on the gravestone.
In the congregation that I had attended in the past, the former leader once told me about how he was born again. He found his father’s Bible, where on the first page was written: “Born on…, born the second time on….” He had asked his mother what that meant, and his mother had told him about his father’s inner experience. This had made him feel so unsettled that he began to seek for and ask for true life from God. He did not stop praying until new life was given to him. Since then, he has been able to profess: “I have been born again.”
As we cannot have a life outside without birth, so there can be no authentic inner life without being born again. Jesus clearly spoke this truth that is so crucial for our lives:
Unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.