About the Author

Thomas Ray Floyd was born in 1953 in Simpson County, Mississippi, the son of Roy Thomas Floyd and Lina Sue Shows Floyd. Thomas Ray's mother was a member of a Primitive Baptist church, and he cut his teeth on the doctrines of distinguishing grace.

When he was a small boy, his father was converted to Christ and became a member of a Missionary Baptist Church. Thomas Ray joined the church of his father when he was 13 years old, and thought of himself as a Christian. The doctrines of grace that he had heard as a child continued to be precious to him and when he became an adult, he joined a Primitive Baptist Church. When he was 27, Thomas Ray made his first effort to preach the gospel in public and was ordained to the full functions of the ministry in 1985. In 1986 he was convinced under the preaching of Rolfe Barnard (by tapes from Mt. Olive Tape Library), the written sermons of Spurgeon, and the ministry of Elder Zack Guess that he had been a false professor and cried out in agony of soul to the Lord Jesus Christ to have mercy and truly save him. And He did! Floyd then began to preach the gospel as he had been taught of the Lord.

Floyd has pastored churches in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Tennessee and until recently was pastor of a church plant known as "Particular Baptist Fellowship." He and his wife Brenda presently attend Zion Baptist Church at Polkville, Mississippi, pastored by Elder Glen Hopkins. The pulpit ministry of Zion Baptist Church can be heard at Sermonaudio.com.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Ye Must Be Born Again

(Article for publication week of 8-19-2009 AD)

"Marvel not that I said unto thee, ‘ Ye must be born again.’ " (John 3:7).

For over three and a half years now we have been setting forth in these weekly articles the necessity, mystery and evidences of the New Birth starting with Jesus’ dialogue with Nicodemus in John 3:1-8. Next week, Lord willing we will begin a new series. But before we leave our subject I want to give some concluding and challenging words.

My dear friends, the New Birth is an absolute necessity. If you miss the New Birth, you miss Christ; and if you miss Christ, you miss salvation; and if you miss salvation, you miss heaven; and if you miss all these, why you miss everything. Many of you who read this column are religious people. But I ask you my friends, are you born again? Has the Holy Spirit quickened you into spiritual life? Have you ever been miraculously and supernaturally changed by the saving power of Christ? Has Christ become precious to you? Have you become sick of your sins? Have you been granted repentance? Have you come to Christ as a lost sinner begging for His mercy? Have you been delivered from the power of darkness? Have you been translated into the kingdom of God’s Dear Son? Have you been called into the marvelous light of God? Have you passed from death unto life? Have you been given a new heart? In short, have you had a saving change? These are all scriptural questions that you must examine yourself and see if you have the answer.

The New Birth is not some mental assent to the gospel. It is not improving your morals or your ethics. It is not joining a church. It is not getting baptized. It is not accepting Jesus. It is not walking down an aisle. It is not repeating a prayer. It is not memorizing some scripture. It is not head knowledge of some scriptural truths. It is the sovereign operation of the Holy Spirit working a saving change in the heart and soul of an elect sinner. It is being made a new creature.

Now, I hope you will think about these things. There is nothing I can do for any of you, except pray the Lord will bring you to faith in His Son. There is nothing you can do for yourself, except throw yourself on the mercy of God and believe in His Son for your salvation.

Some of you will dismiss me as a crank and go on in your religion and die and go to hell. Some of you will express agreement with what I have said, and think I have been talking to others, but I have been talking to YOU. Some of you will say, “ I know I’m saved, because I joined the church “ and you will go on to hell. Some of you will continue in your sins and you will go on to hell. All through eternity you will be weeping and wailing and gnashing your teeth and wishing you had listened to that fool of a preacher. But perhaps some of you will be brought to saving faith through the power of the Word and the Spirit. And Oh! What a joy that would be!

I leave you in the hands of a Sovereign God Who has power to save and power to damn. How will it be with you my friend? Will you be saved or damned? Are you born again?

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