Friday, May 10, 2013

Regeneration vs. New Birth

From the Signs of the Times of June 1851.

"The life and death of the dear Redeemer, met all the claims of the divine law, and satisfied the demands of timmutable justice.  But it must be seen by all intelligent christians that redemption did not impart divine life to his subjects, without which none can "know the only true God and Jesus Christ whom he hath sent."  This is the effect of regeneration, from whence springs the new birth, or "being born again."  (Elder Thomas P. Dudley - see here)

In my book on the Hardshell Baptist Cult, I have given evidence that a large majority of first generation Hardshells believed that regeneration and being born again were not the same thing, that they argued for a three stage model of spiritual birth, arguing that "regeneration" was equivalent to the implanting of the male seed (as in natural conception), and that conviction of sin was equivalent to being in the womb, or in darkness and prior to being "delivered" from the womb, and that the "birth" was the emergence from the womb of darkness and comparable to being converted by the Gospel.  Here is more evidence that such a view was again asserted.  Such a view does not make Gospel conversion optional, but necessary for being eternally saved.  When Jesus said - "you must be born again" - the first Hardshells believed, as their articles of faith stated, that the elect must be both regenerated AND converted.

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