The Nature of Salvation: Regeneration and Adoption

What does this mean?

Regeneration is the impartation of a new nature by the gift of the Holy Spirit. It is a new, spiritual birth. It is what happens when we repent and trust God for eternal life.

“He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, who he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior . . .” (Titus 3:5-6).

Here is a list of scriptures that deal with regeneration: John 1:13, 4:14, 3:3,5, Acts 2:38, Galatians 6:15, II Corinthians 5:17, I Peter 2:23-26.

Adoption is the reception of the place, the affection, and the responsibilities of the children of God by those who come to saving faith in Christ.

You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus . . . “ (Galatians 3:27)

Other scriptures that deal with adoption are I John 3:1, Romans 8:17 and John 1:12.

  1. The full privileges of our adoption come at the return of Christ (Matthew 13:43, Luke 20:36, I John 3:2).

  2. The witness of our adoption is the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:14-15, Galatians 4:5).

  3. God’s eternal purpose for us was to be his children (Ephesians 1:5).

  4. Our character is to reflect our adoption (Matthew 5:9, 45).


What does this mean to me?

I need to look at my own life for the evidence of regeneration.

  1. Righteousness in life and victory over sin

    “If you know that he is righteous, you know that everyone who does what is right has been born of him . . . No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been born of God” (I John 2:29, 3;9). The context implies that this is habitual and deep-seated hatred and envy of believers who are walking with God and a refusal to come under Biblical standards of morality.

  2. Love for other believers in Christ.

    “Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God” (I John 4:7).

  3. Trust and love for Christ.

    “Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves the father loves his child as well” (I John 5:1).


All scripture references taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, copyright 1973, 1978 by the International Bible Society and used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.

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