A First Book of Daily Readings
by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (selected by Frank Cumbers)
Sourced from the OPC website
Born of the Spirit
[Nicodemus] is a master of Israel, but here he is confronted by Someone who clearly has more than he has himself. But he thinks … “It is only a more advanced stage than that which I have already reached.” … He is on the point of saying, “What do I need in addition?” And our Lord turns upon him and says, ” … You are all wrong…. What you need is to be born of water and of the Spirit…. You need the illumination and power of the Spirit. You cannot do this thing for yourself….”
You see the same thing in practice in the Acts of the Apostles. The first Christian convert on the continent of Europe … was a woman called Lydia…. How was she converted? Was she carried away by the personality of the Apostle Paul? … This is not what the record says. In Acts 16:14 we read, “Whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul.”
Even Paul could not save a soul, mighty man that he was.
The Lord the Holy Spirit alone can open the heart and enable us to receive the truth…. [See 1 Corinthians 12:3]. If you need something further, you need only go to Ephesians 2, and there you will find that there is only one hope for those who are “dead in trespasses and sins,” those who are “the children of wrath” and who walk “according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience” and are slaves to lusts and passions of the mind as well as of the flesh and the body.
There is only one hope for them. “You hath he quickened.” “We are his workmanship.” Without the work and authority and power of the Holy Spirit there would never be a single believer in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Authority, pp. 74-6
“Text reproduced from ‘A First Book of Daily Readings’ by Martyn Lloyd-Jones, published by Epworth Press 1970 & 1977 © Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes. Used with permission.”
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