Sermon Illustrations - Tag: regeneration
Posted by Douglas on Oct 31, 2012

Whenever I hear the word "regeneration," I always think of starfish. After all, a starfish has the ability to regenerate a limb. If a starfish loses a limb, it will begin growing a new one, and sometimes in as little as a few months, it will have a brand new leg, and you might not know it had ever been injured.

But I learned something recently that I never knew about starfish: some species of starfish have the ability to regrow an entire starfish from the limb that is broken off!.

Sound crazy? It sure sounded crazy to me. Since the limb doesn't have a mouth, it lives off stored nutrients within itself, and uses that energy to begin growing a new disk. And eventually, if it survives long enough, it'll grow a whole new mouth, and then it can start eating again, while it continues regrowing the rest of its limbs.

Suddenly, I had a whole new perpsective on Titus 3:5:

3:5he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit,Titus 3:5 (ESV)

What is regeneration? Perhaps my original picture of regeneration is no longer sufficient. Regeneration is not me growing new spiritual limbs; regeneration is God taking something as dead and useless as a lump of starfish leg, and -- impossible as it might seem -- making it into something alive and useful -- a brand new spiritually living person.

And if that's regeneration, then perhaps renewing is what I always pictured as regeneration: God taking something that he has already made alive, and repairing the damage that it receives throughout the day-to-day living in this world.

I'm so glad that my God is powerful enough to make me alive when I was dead, and I'm so grateful that he's willing to repair and renew me day by day!

Popular tags
Christian life, Jesus, character, integrity, love, trouble, mountains, children, hiking, heart, perseverance, 1 Peter 2:1, sermon on the mount, faithfulness, Philippians 4:8, heaven, music, the church, gifts, contentment, scripture, 1 Peter 2:4, God's will, foundation, hope, faith, Christmas, humility, devotion, sin, Romans 12:2, spiritual discipline, 2 Corinthians 3:18, art, renewal, human nature, salvation, strength, Hebrews 12:2, age groups, stability, teaching, obedience, 1 John 5:3, generosity, Titus 2:11, death, the gospel, deceit, commandments, selfishness, Colossians 4:6, responsibility, interpretation, listening, behavior, materialism, justice, Galatians 6:1, self-control, 2 Peter 1:5, envy, Philippians 4:11, Psalms 103:13, Philippians 2:3, creation, blessings, excellence, beauty, Matthew 6:26, light, servanthood, voice, James 1:19, peace, John 11:35, Luke 12:34, Christ's return, counsel, Romans 8:24, Ecclesiastes 1:4, Matthew 15:18, John 6:38, Jeremiah 17:9, the good shepherd, Hebrews 12:15, Psalms 95:8, Proverbs 3:5, resurrection, Luke 12:32, Revelation 22:20, cooperation, patience, 1 Peter 3:3, Ecclesiastes 7:2, Ecclesiastes 11:4, 1 Peter 1:7, John 14:21, anger, public speaking, trust, grief, treasure, 1 Corinthians 15:1, Micah 6:8, Psalms 50:10, math, suffering, bitterness, John 16:33, Matthew 18:3, priorities, delayed gratification, James 5:5, Galatians 3:19, 2 Corinthians 9:7, logic, 1 Peter 1:6, work, 1 John 4:19, Titus 2:13, 1 Corinthians 15:30, Psalms 51:7, John 14:6, Philippians 2:12, 2 Corinthians 5:20, the law, Deuteronomy 6:5, Romans 3:23, Matthew 7:12, Colossians 1:15, John 10:10, danger, Titus 3:4, Colossians 1:16, Philippians 1:6, 1 Corinthians 12:22, Isaiah 35:4, John 14:24, James 1:23, Revelation 5:2, golden rule, 1 Peter 1:18, Proverbs 25:13, truth, Matthew 5:37, body of Christ, Matthew 20:26, John 5:36, James 1:5, Psalms 8:3, Philippians 4:9, kindness, context, 1 Peter 1:17, 1 Peter 2:19, Psalms 95:7, cleansing, 2 Corinthians 9:6, Philippians 2:1, ambassadors, wisdom, mind, Genesis 9:6, imitating, Proverbs 25:16, 1 Peter 1:23, 1 Peter 2:21, Psalms 29:3, Leviticus 19:32, culture, unity, Philippians 2:9, walking the talk, James 1:2, Ecclesiastes 3:11, Matthew 22:37, James 2:10, Proverbs 25:17, Psalms 73:18, Galatians 6:2, Luke 2:10, Psalms 29:9, respect, James 1:17, Colossians 3:12, 2 Timothy 4:3, Psalms 84:10, Isaiah 60:1, Psalms 73:2, family, Incarnation, glory, John 4:34, Ecclesiastes 4:9, Numbers 32:23, Psalms 40:8, 1 Peter 2:12, gentleness, Matthew 5:36, John 1:4, grace, Epiphany, Romans 14:6, fellowship, John 8:34, Philippians 4:1, Luke 14:12, diligence, Isaiah 40:4, judgment, Titus 3:5, Ephesians 2:19, power, Philippians 3:20, honor, meekness, 1 Corinthians 13:7, Psalms 17:8, 1 Peter 2:6, John 1:23, Matthew 28:19, 1 Peter 2:22, regeneration, Galatians 6:5, Psalms 66:18, 1 Peter 2:11, John 13:15, Matthew 6:25, Hebrews 10:24, attention, disappointment, Matthew 15:11, Matthew 10:5, comparisons, Matthew 11:30, prayer, sojourners, John 10:1, Matthew 6:34, 1 Peter 2:2, preaching, Proverbs 25:8, discipleship, John 14:3, Psalms 1:1, Genesis 2:7, Deuteronomy 32:4, Ecclesiastes 11:1