Jesus told Nicodemus “Unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Being born again means God has given you a new heart and put his Spirit within you. When it comes right down to it our troubles revolve around heart issues. Jesus said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.”
If you’ve run in “Christian circles”, or have very many Christian friends, you may have heard the saying, “It’s a God thing.” A God thing means it’s one of those moments or events only explainable by crediting God for it. You know it’s those people, or happenings, in life that seems like “a coincidence.” Of course if you believe in a Sovereign God you know it isn’t a coincidence, rather it’s God breaking into your life for a purpose.
When Jesus walked this earth he taught many kingdom principles by way of parables. He would use simple illustrations to define God’s way of seeing things. More times than not his teaching would blow right past his hearers, but it wasn’t because they couldn’t understand the words coming out of his mouth rather they had a dull or hard heart. Jesus confirmed what the prophet Isaiah had said hundreds of years before. He said, “You will keep on hearing, but will not understand; you will keep on seeing, but will not perceive; for the heart of this people has become dull, with their ears they scarcely hear, and they have closed their eyes, otherwise they would see with their eyes, hear with their ears, and understand with their heart and return, and I would heal them.”
Recently someone told me they heard a preacher say, “God isn’t interested, or involved, that intimately in our everyday lives.” I was shocked at first hearing this because I thought to myself “How long would I want to listen to this man teach me about a God that isn’t concerned about my everyday life?”
On the other hand C.S. Lewis said, “There is no neutral ground in the universe; every square inch, every split second, is claimed by God and counter claimed by Satan.” I don’t know about you but that sounds as if God is very intimately involved in our lives. We are in a battle between the forces of Good and Evil and Light and Darkness and without a new heart we will continue with dull eyes and ears. But thank God we don’t have to.
Several times throughout the Gospels Jesus’ disciples would pull him to the side and say something like “I don’t get that what exactly does that mean?” Jesus would then go on to spell it out for them so they could understand. He told them “Blessed are your eyes, because they see; and your ears, because they hear.”
What is the solution then? Well let’s look back at the original prophecy found in Isaiah 6. God told Isaiah to prophecy to a people who wouldn’t perceive what he was saying; so Isaiah asked “For how long?” God’s response was “Until cities are devastated and without inhabitant, houses are without people and the land is utterly desolate…” In other words until calamity overtakes them to the point where they cry out to me. It is then, and only then, that we despair over our lives enough to be open to receive the promised new heart and Spirit. Once that happens our eyes and ears will be open to the kingdom we have been longing for for so long. We will start to see God in our everyday lives and want everyone to experience it and will become the witness God has wanted all along.
God will not withhold any good thing from his children. In fact Jesus said, “It is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.”