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Sermon #1124

Characteristics of the New Life

A Sermon on John 3:1-8


John 3:1-8 ESV KJV
Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. This man came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do unless God is …

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Sermon Description

In this sermon on John 3:8 identifying “Characteristics of the New Life,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones speaks of the signs of those who have been born again: Christians who have been saved exhibit more than a conscience that condemns their wickedness but also exhibit new desires to please God and wage war against fleshly desires and evil. He describes the differences between a normal conscience that all humans possess and the new life that is given to every believer. Moreover, he shows that anyone who has new life is consumed not with earthly things but spiritual ones. The new Christian is noticeably different to their old friends, and there is a tension put on these relationships. The new Christian’s friends might notice that the Christian acts differently, speaks differently, and spends time in different ways, all of which often drive a wedge between the two individuals who used to have worldly desires and actions in common. If the listener finds these things to be true of themselves, they are encouraged to ask: “have I been born again?”

Sermon Breakdown

  1. Awareness of a new life and nature within. There is now an element within us that wasn't there before. We are aware of two beings within us that are in opposition and conflict - the old nature and the new nature.
  2. Surprised at oneself. There is a sense of amazement and astonishment at the new life within. The contrast between the fallen human nature and God's nature is indescribable.
  3. Other people are aware of the change. Unregenerate people will know there is now something different that has come between them. They resent the new life that has become the biggest thing.
  4. New spiritual interest and understanding. There is now an interest in spiritual matters like God, the soul, purpose of life, death, and the afterlife. There is an intuitive knowledge and insight into spiritual truths, though not perfectly. The natural man lacks this and rejects spiritual things as foolishness.
  5. No difficulty with core doctrines. There is no trouble believing in sin, condemnation, hell, redemption, incarnation, atonement, regeneration, etc. These are accepted and even delighted in.
  6. Dependent on revelation. The born again person sees that revelation from God is necessary since man was blinded by sin. Miracles and the supernatural are accepted. The Bible is believed to be the Word of God.
  7. No longer arguing preliminaries. The born again person is past arguing about whether Christianity is reasonable or fits with science and philosophy. They have moved on to deeper things.

The Book of John

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.