The Except Without Exception Print E-mail

Bishop David Rowe

Apostolic Temple Church
South Bend, Indiana

The Except Without Exception

According to the custom and knowledge of this world, there is an “exception” to every rule.  And, as a rule, one will find it so. However, in respect to the infallible Word of God (the truth of the scriptures) such is definitely not the case. The Bible says just what it means, and means exactly what it says. No one is innocent or without sin who would either add or take from the written Word of God. (Rev. 22:19)
Certain judgment from our creator awaits those who are guilty of so doing.  In fact, so infallible is the Word of God that “Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away” (Mark 13:31, Luke 21:33).  With such scriptural facts in mind, let me remind you that when Jesus spoke to Nicodemus saying, “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God” (John 3:5). He was speaking of the Except without Exception. In the beginning of His conversation with the ruler of the Jews, Christ Jesus not only used the Hebrew method of double wording to emphasize the importance of His timely message (Verily, verily,…), but He also used the same all-important word “except” thus revealing to Nicodemus the fact that he must be born again to see the kingdom of God.
Not long ago, seeds from poppies that bloomed in the days of Pharaohs in the land of Egypt were found in earthen vessels in the tombs of kings.  Also, some ancient peas that once grew in the gardens of kings were found. A noted English horticulturalist wondered if after 3,500 years those seeds would spring up and grow. So, he planted and watered them, and set them out into the bright sunlight, and waited for the result. To his utter astonishment, in a few days, they sprang to life and grew. The poppies became more beautiful than those raised in Southern California, and the peas were more delicious than those we have in our gardens today. The mystery of life was contained in the germ of life in each seed.
Should it therefore be thought incredible that life eternal should be retained in the seed of truth, and after two thousand years spring into life again?  Beloved, it was for this reason that Christ Jesus said, “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me…shall never die”  (John 11:25-26). Are you not convinced and ready to obey Acts 2:38 today?  Such being the case, I am sure you will be in a position to sing, as never before. What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and grief’s to bear, what a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer.

God’s Holy Word contains illumination, inspiration, and revelation. May our heavenly father grant you these today. “And be not conformed to this world; but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God” (Rom. 12:2).  The Apostle Paul goes to the root of the matter when he says, “Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind.”  And here we see the difference between conformity and transformation. Conformity is the law of dead things; Transformation is the law of life.
Fill a mold with liquid metal, or gypsum, or clay, or any other dead thing, and it will take just that shape. It has no power to break through its surroundings. But a living thing will refuse to be held down in this way. The living grows and expands, and when the shell or mold becomes too small, it breaks through and comes forth to larger life.
If you put a seed into the ground, bury it deep, and heap stones upon it, it will conquer its circumstances and pierce through the soil, heave up the rocks, reach upward toward the light and make for itself a larger world. This is just the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus.
If there is no real faith, and love, and divine power in you, you will be held in and formed by your circumstances. But you can be superior to your circumstances. “For whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin, for his seed remaineth in him and he cannot sin, because he is born of God”   
(I John 3:9).
Most assuredly the same omnipotent God who created the natural birth is also abundantly able to create a new birth of spiritual life and immortality. In the first instance we are born of flesh and blood; whereas, in the second we are born of the water and spirit. The first prepares us for an entrance into our present world.  The second prepares us for the world that is to come.
The conclusion of the whole matter is this: The Gospels point to the way of Salvation, and the Epistles confirm it. However, the door of Salvation is found in the book of Acts. This born again plan of Salvation consisting of water and spirit in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ is definitely “The Except Without Exception” and must be obeyed to the letter.

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