Small Group Study:In John 3:1-15 Jesus told a religious leader among the Pharisees named Nicodemus that he must experience a total life change from the inside out.
John 3:3 “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
Reading the following verses and remembering the sermon, discuss: What does it mean to be “born again”?
Ezekiel 36:25-27 "I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you. And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules."
1 John 3:9 “No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God's seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God.”
In the Christian life we struggle to see the reality of our new birth in daily life. The flesh does not die easily. Here are four practical ways to cooperate with the Spirit’s working in our lives in our daily battle against sin.
1. Trust the Holy Spirit. New Birth is the work of God, not man. Therefore, daily trust and hope in the Holy Spirit to be the ultimate source of defeating sin.
Recently, in what areas of your life have you been trusting your own efforts more than the Spirit?
2. Believe in Jesus.
John 3:14-15 “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.” It is very important to believe that we have been forgiven each sin even before we are able to stop committing each sin. Therefore, believe each that Jesus has fully paid for every sin in your life—past, future, and present.
Do you believe you are forgiven for every sin in your life—even those you are still trapped in?
3. Walk by the Spirit.
Fill your daily life with the things of the Spirit of God and rid your daily life of the things that are opposed to the Spirit. Read, meditate on, and memorize the “Sword of the Spirit”—the Bible—daily. Pray “in the Spirit” constantly. Try to listen to the leading of the Spirit as he guides you daily to avoid sin and act in faith. Rid your life of forms of entertainment, activities, and practices that are not pure. (For more details see Galatians 5:16-26.)
Has your past week been filled with the things of the Spirit or of the world?
4. Walk in the light.
Frequently confess your sins to trusted Christians. This will loosen sin’s grip on your life. (For more details see 1 John 1:6-10.)
Are there any sins you should confess right now?