Of all the magnificent mysteries of God’s intelligent design of our cosmos, and the creatures that inhabit our highly favored earthly home, is the metamorphosis and incomprehensible migratory flight of the tiny Monarch butterfly from its summer home near Saskatchewan, Canada, to its winter residence in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of southern Mexico. This annual 3,000 mile, four generational air voyage defies the laws of reason and leaves the naturalist reeling in bewilderment. The unsolved scientific mystery of the metamorphosis itself whereby a helplessly aging caterpillar spins a cocoon around himself; dies and is born again into the picturesque, aerodynamic butterfly should be enough to convince any open-minded naturalist that Somebody with a mind that dwarfs the Cray Supercomputer designed and created the supernaturally derived wonder – world in which we live.
Using a time-compensated sun compass and a mysterious weather center, the butterfly computes wind speed, wind direction, barometric pressure and a global positioning system with pinpoint accuracy. Over a twelve-month period and four generations of complete metamorphosis a multi-generational butterfly leaves a certain tree in Mexico and completes a round trip, transcontinental voyage to a specific tree in Canada and returns without any communication from the generations that preceded him.
The caterpillar phase is restricted to slow meticulous travel along dirt paths, leaves, and tree limbs. The butterfly phase is ounce for ounce the most picturesque flying machine to ever take flight.
Blind chance? Mindless evolution? Random chemical accidents? Happenstance biology?
When Nicodemus, a Jewish ruler, encountered Jesus one evening in the first year of Jesus’ public ministry and commented on Jesus’ deity, Jesus told Nicodemus that a man would have to undergo a similar process as the butterfly to gain eternal life. He would have to be “born again.” The “old man” would have to die and a “new man” would have to come alive. A man, once enslaved to a lifestyle crawling on the dirt of sinful addictions, would spin himself into a cocoon of prayer and leave the cocoon a new creation in Christ.
From death to life.
From darkness to light.
From eternal condemnation to eternal life.
A majestic butterfly would never go back and recommit his life to the lowly crawl of a caterpillar anymore than a truly regenerated follower of Christ would return to his life of blind foolishness before he gave his life to Christ.
No transformation could be more richly rewarded! No regeneration could be more complete!
Mark these Key Words: Believe faith
Old Testament Viewpoint
Genesis 15:1-6; Psalms, 32:5
Genesis 15:1-6 After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Do not fear, Abram, I am a shield to you; Your reward shall be very great.” Abram said, “O Lord GOD, what will You give me, since I am childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” And Abram said, “Since You have given no offspring to me, one born in my house is my heir.” Then behold, the word of the LORD came to him, saying, “This man will not be your heir; but one who will come forth from your own body, he shall be your heir.” And He took him outside and said, “Now look toward the heavens, and count the stars, if you are able to count them.” And He said to him, “So shall your descendants be.” Then he believed in the LORD; and He reckoned it to him as righteousness.
Psalms, 32:5 I acknowledged my sin to You, and my iniquity I did not hide; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD”; and You forgave the guilt of my sin. Selah.
New Testament Viewpoint
Ephesians 2:8-9; Romans 10:9-12, 17; John 1:12; John 3:3;
Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.
Romans 10:9-11, 17
That if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. 17 For the Scripture says, WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED. So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.
John 1:12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name.
John 3:3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
What is God saying?
1) How does one obtain salvation (eternal life) according to God’s Word?
2) How did Abraham gain righteous approval from God?
3) What amount of works can earn our salvation? Why?
4) Who gets the glory for our salvation?
Why did God do it this way?
5) How do you confirm what you believe in your heart?
6) How does true faith differ from intellectual belief?
What else of significance do you see God saying in this passage?
How does this passage relate to me today? What changes does it bring to my life?
Describe your salvation journey.
Memory Verse: John 1:12
But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name.
A Adoration: Father, today I praise You for…
C Confession: Father, please forgive me for…
T Thanksgiving: Father, today I’m thankful for…
S Supplication: Father, the people & things that I wish to pray for today are…