Understanding The Bible
Clarence E. Mason's "Soteriology"
Return to Syllabus
BY THE AUTHOR
Dr. Clarence E. Mason, Jr.
Philadelphia College of Bible
- THE NATURE OF REGENERATION
- Regeneration is not baptism
The Romanists hold the doctrine that regeneration is accomplished only
through the instrumentality of baptism. The language of the baptismal
formula of the Protestant Episcopal, Lutheran, and a number of other
churches, states or implies regeneration is associated with, or accomplished
by, water baptism. This is effectual in every instance of its application to
an infant. In the case of adults its virtue may be either resisted and
nullified, or received and improved.
Such passages as the following emphasize regeneration: Jn. 3:5; Gal. 6:15;
Jas. 1:18; 1 Pet. 1:23; 1 Cor. 4:15; 1:14-17. If baptism and salvation are
synonymous, 1 Corinthians 4:15 and 1 Corinthians 1:14 are contradictory. In
Acts 8:13,20-23, Simon was baptized but was "in the gall of bitterness and
the bond of iniquity"; cp. Luke 23:43.
- Regeneration is not reformation
Regeneration is not reformation, but it is a supernatural act of God (Jn.
1:12-13; Tit. 3:5; Eph. 1:19-22). Reformation is a forward step in man's
experience. The Pharisees were reformers, but they did not strike at the
root of the disease, which was sin.
- The positive aspects of regeneration
- It is the impartation of a new nature (2 Pet. 1:4).
- It is a spiritual quickening (Eph. 2:1, 5-6; Jn. 5:21,
- It is a spiritual creation (Eph. 2:10; Gal. 6:15 ASV; 2
"Regeneration is not evolution, but involution, the communication of a new
life. It is a revolution, a change of direction resulting from that life.
A new governing power comes into the regenerate man's life by which he is
enabled to become holy in experience. " William Evans
- THE NECESSITY OF REGENERATION
- It is universally necessary (Jn. 3:3,5; Gal. 6:15).
- The sinful condition of man demands it (Jn. 3:6; Rom.
7:18; 8:8; 12:2; Jer. 13:2
- The holiness of God demands it (Heb. 12:14 ASV, the
- The presence of spiritual death demands it (Eph. 2:1).
- THE MEANS OF REGENERATION
- It is a Divine work (Jn. 1:13; Jas. 1:18; Tit. 3:5).
In the salvation of every person there is an actual putting forth of Divine
power whereby the dead sinner is quickened (made alive).
- God begets men through the Holy Spirit (Tit. 3:5; Jn.
- The Word is the instrument that the Holy Spirit uses in
regeneration (Jas. 1:18; 1 Pet. 1:23,25).
- Men are used of God for the regeneration of sinners by
the preaching of the gospel (1 Cor. 4:15).
- The human side of the means of regeneration
- The written Word must be received and believed (1 Pet.
1:23; Acts 2:41; 1 Cor. 4:15).
- The Incarnate Word must be believed and received (Jn.
1:1,12; Gal. 3:26).
- THE RESULTS OF REGENERATION
- A radical change in life and experience (2 Cor. 5:17).
Regeneration is not gradual in its occurrence though it may be gradual in
- Sonship with God (Gal. 3:26).
- The indwelling of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 3:16; 6:19).
- Liberated from the slavery of the flesh (Rom. 8:2, 9).
- A living faith in Christ (1 Jn. 5:4).
- Victory over the world (1 Jn. 5:4).
- Cessation of sin as a life practice (1 Jn. 3:9).
- Establishment of righteousness as a life practice (1 Jn.
- Christian love (1 Jn. 3:14).
Regeneration is the Holy Spirit's gracious, sovereign, quickening act in which
the Divine nature is imparted to the soul of man, causing a reversal of his
attitude toward God and sin, the expression of which, in repentance and faith,
is secured through the instrumentality of the Word of God.
Return to Syllabus
200 Manor Avenue
Langhorne, PA 19047
United States of America
Notes" Study materials on this website are made available
here free, through the generosity of Cairn University,
and may be copied for use in Bible study groups, in limited numbers, providing
that no charge is made for them. No further distribution or use
of these materials is allowable under U.S. or International Copyright
Law without the express permission of Cairn University.