6. PRAYING EVERYDAY
Praying everyday is not the same as being born again. Whe I was a child, I approach a priest and asked him, “Sir, how can I go to Heaven?” He said , “My son, pray ‘Hail Mary’ three times a day, and ‘Our Father’ once a day, and you wil go to Heaven.” I thank him, and began to pray everyday, reciting The Lord’s Prayer and Hail Mary: Oh, how I prayed! But, that was not the way to salvation! I diligently followed my priest’s instructions but I was not still born again.
You may be very religious, but if you are not born again, you will die and go to Hell.
7. READING THE BIBLE
Reading the Bible or quoting the scriptures is not a guarantee of salvation. You may be able to quote the Bible from Genesis to Revelation. This does not mean that you are born again. There are even theologians who have doctorate degree, but are not born again.
8. BEING BAPTIZED
Baptism is not the same as being born again . Jesus Himself commanded us to be baptized, but He said baptism should follow salvation.
Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believe and is baptized shall be saved…. (Mark 16:15, 16)
You have to believe before you are baptized. It has become the tradition to baptized children when the are eight days old. How can you believe when you are eight days old?
Baptism is immersion in water: a sign to the person being baptized and to all witnesses, that he is now born again. The “old man” of sin goes down into the water and the “new man” recreated in Christ emerges.
We say baptism is a sign, because when you are born again, nothing actually happens physically for those around you to see. So being baptized becomes a physical sign of what happened inside.
9. BEING CONFIRMED
In some churches, a person is baptized by the sprinkling of water on him when he is an eight-days-old baby. It is expected that when he grows up he will come back to church to confirm his christianity. This is what is known as confirmation.
I think that what really happen is this: At some point in development of christianity, people felt they were “big-shots”; too big to be immersed publicly in water. It was humiliating for them to be put into water publicly, so I believe it was arranged for people to be baptized as children.
Then, when they grew up, they were confimed. The result of all of this is a lot of confirmed unbelievers on their way to Hell. Being confirmed is not the same as being born again.
10. TAKING HOLY COMMUNION
Taking Holy Communion is not the same as being born again.
It does not matter how much of the communion wine you drink, or bread you eat. Taking Holy Communion or the Lord’s Supper is actually meant for born-again Christians, who eat the bread and drink the wine in rememberance of Christ’s death. However, it is now common to die-hard sinners who are on their deathbeds, approaching the gates of Hell.
A whole crates of wine and a big loaf of bread which has been left in the Cathedral until it becomes “holy” may be served to a sinner but it will not take him to Heaven.
11. BEING IN A CHRISTIAN FAMILY
Being in a Christian family is not the same as being born again.
I was brought up in a “Christian” family. I was baptized as a baby, and then confirmed later. I was also given Bible and a hymn book by my godmother in England, but it just gathered dust on the shelf. I was in the church with my family for years untill I became born again; there was a definite point in my life when I got born again.
I find that those who are a bit older or more orthodox are surprised (like Nicodemus), when they are told they must be born again. They have been devoted “Christians” all their lives, probably they know. If after serving the Lord sincerely over over the years, some young man comes along to tell them that they need to be born again, I can understand their surprise. All the same, a “Christan” upbringing is not substitute for being born again.
12. USING CHRISTIAN JARGON
Using Christian jargon is not same as being born again.
Examples of these are: “Praise the Lord”,
“Halleluyah”, “Glory”, “Be blessed”, and “Amen, brother!”
I have worked with people in various Christian groups, some times with musicians. There are times I have feld that some of these people were not really born again. I doubted if they were so rich in Christian jargon. When they met you, they knew exactly what they were supposed to say.