Being born again is a onetime event that occurs when we die to this fallen world system and are reborn into the family of God in Christ Jesus. Our purpose is to look like and act like our Heavenly Father by being transformed from the old life into the character and personality of God. This transformation is represented as a cycle of life that is a constant loop of dying to self and being renewed to the likeness and the mindset of Christ.
It is a continuous process of being renewed in the things of the spirit while dying to the things of this fallen world. This is a cycle of descending into death to the life we live in this fallen world system and ascending to a new life in Christ. We must die to the things that promote an egotistical and self-absorbed life where the primary concern is with oneself.
When we are born again as followers of Christ, our spirits are reborn to the original purpose, to replenish this world with the image of God. Though our spirit man has been reborn, our mind and bodies remain trained to the customs and way of this fallen world. It is the process of renewing our old mindset to the things above and the things that impact eternity and the souls of men.
Colossians 3:2-3, 5a, 7, 8a, 9b, 10 Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. 3 For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 5 Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth:… 7 in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them. 8a But now you yourselves are to put off all these…. 9b, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, 10 and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him,
This process starts with dying to self-interest and living for the Kingdom of God. To tell oneself “no” is something that must be cultivated because this world system has trained us to be self-centered and not to deny ourselves. The word of God tells us to sacrifice ourselves for others and to go the extra mile when needed. Life is about the choices we make.
We can choose to continue in the same life style we were trained by this world system or choose to live a renewed life. The fallen nature of mankind is always looking for self-gratification even at the expense of others. But in the Kingdom system we give our lives so others may live. This is what Jesus did and as He is, so are we in this world.
1 John 4:17 Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world.
When we are born again we are to renew our minds and understand the Kingdom of God has come. This Kingdom works on totally different principles, unlike this world system. We must begin to operate in the principles Jesus taught and live by God’s Kingdom system of seedtime and harvest. Recognizing the process of dying to oneself is the seed that is planted and then this death will produce a new life.
When we choose to die to ourselves then our lives and energy can be planted in the lives of others. Through this others may see and know the love and the life of God. This is eternal life, dying to self in the natural but living eternally in the spirit, which brings forth life and abundant fruit in our lives.
The principles of seedtime and harvest, consist of planting at the present time, with the hope and expectation of reaping later, but greater than we sowed. Farmers live by this principle all their lives; understanding to sow a seed means giving up something you have but with the full assurance that it will return in a greater amount than which was sown. A single seed, when it is planted dies to its original form but it produces abundance once the cycle of harvest is completed. We are well aware of the concept, you reap what you sow; what goes around comes around or karma. All these life sayings speaks of seedtime and harvest. When we sow we will reap later than what we sowed but it will be greater also.
Genesis 8:22 While the earth remains, Seedtime and harvest, Cold and heat, Winter and summer And day and night Shall not cease.”
When we understand this universal principle of saying no to self, we will have the ability to transform our lives to be like Christ, so that we may bring life to others. When we learn how to operate in this spiritual principle of sowing and reaping, we become like Christ Who sowed His life as the spiritual seed to bring an abundant harvest in our lives for the Kingdom and the image of God.