The Gospel and the Insider – Gospel in Life

The Gospel and the Insider

Tim Keller |  September 26, 2010

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  • The Holy Spirit
  • Salvation
  • Understanding the Gospel
John 3:1-14
RS 325-01


What is the gospel’s effect when it’s brought out of the church and into the world? It does many things, but one of them is that it leads to conversions. It has the power to convert individuals from death to life, from darkness to light.

In today’s passage we see that Jesus describes the gospel message as the “new birth,” which is to be converted or born again. We’re going to look at five points that provide a complete guide to what it means to be born again: 1) who it’s for, 2) where it’s from, 3) what it is, 4) how it’s received, and 5) its effect on your life.

John 3:1–16

In Jesus’ conversation with Nicodemus, He talks about the importance of being spiritually reborn to be part of God’s kingdom. This idea, symbolized by water and Spirit, is a bit like the wind – we don’t always know where it’s coming from or going to, but it’s a crucial part of living forever with God. This idea of being reborn and what it means is a key part of the good news of Jesus, and it makes a big difference in our lives.

1. Who is it for?

People often think that being a “born-again Christian” is just for emotional people who need rules to live by, but Nicodemus’ story shows that’s not true. He was a respected leader and a religious man, but Jesus still told him he needed to be born again. This shows that anyone, no matter their background or lifestyle, needs this spiritual rebirth.

2. Where is it from?

The “kingdom of God” is talked about a lot in the Bible, and it often refers to heaven. But being born again, or “paliggenesia”, means we can start experiencing some of heaven right here, right now. People like Peter and Paul show us that being born again can bring real change and healing into our lives.

3. What is it?

Being born again means we start a new life with the Holy Spirit inside us, changing who we are at our core. It’s not just about behaving differently, it’s about becoming a new person with a new purpose and a new way of seeing things. It also helps us understand God’s love more deeply. Being born again isn’t just a do-over, it’s a complete inner transformation.

4. How is it received?

We can’t earn our way into heaven, it’s a gift from God. Martin Luther’s story shows us that it’s all about God’s grace and trusting Him. The idea of being “born again” helps us understand how big a deal it is to be saved, and reminds us of the huge sacrifice Jesus made for us when He died on the cross.



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Reading Galatians Can Change Your Life!

Galatians is a powerful book that shows how people can think they know the gospel but are actually losing touch with it. In this study of the book of Galatians, Dr. Keller helps you understand how this short book in the New Testament can transform your life.