I Was Born-Again This Way

Have you ever felt as if trouble was written into your genetic code?

You’re not alone. Some people are so accustomed to trouble; they’ve embraced it as an inevitable way of life.

This week, Gene Simmons defended Arnold Schwarzenegger’s adultery with this “Simmons flatly declares that what Schwarzenegger did isn’t cheating — it’s genetics. Says Simmons of unfaithful men in general, “Respectfully, they’re not cheating. They’re doing what the DNA in their genes tells them to do. They’re doing what they’re designed to do. The male of the species manufactures hundreds of millions of sperm every day. They have no choice in the matter. They can’t take Thursdays off.” http://www.ktucam.com/Article.asp?id=2189946&spid=

Men are designed to cheat or so the argument goes. It’s only natural. They can’t help themselves.

Lady Gaga’s latest hit makes a similar argument. “There’s nothin’ wrong with lovin’ who you are,She said, ’cause He made you perfect, babe, So hold your head up, girl and you, you’ll go far,Listen to me when I say.” She goes on to repeat: “You’re on the right track, baby, you were born this way.”

I enjoy Lady Gaga but this song is an anthem of alternate lifestyles, arguing that there is no possibility of changing who you are and that your best hope is to embrace whatever you choose to embrace regardless of moral truth.

It’s a seduction of the highest (or lowest) order to imagine that the way to fulfillment in this life is to accept ourselves as we were born and abandon all efforts to rise above our DNA. In earth-bound wisdom, it’s tempting to believe we are perfect from birth and simply need to accept who we are in order to find peace.

It isn’t just adulterers or proponents of alternate lifestyles who succomb to this philosophy – at one point, we’ve all drunk that cup of Kool-Aid.

But, I have to agree with Gene Simmons and Lady Gaga that we were born predisposed to alternate lifestyles – alternate to what God intended for us, that is. The Bible puts it this way: “Yet man is born to trouble as surely as sparks fly upward.” Job 5:7

We are born with the curse of Adam and Eve coursing through our veins or, in the words of Bob Dylan: “blinded by the devil, Born already ruined – stone-cold dead as we stepped out of the womb.”

I believe all of us are born into alternative lifestyles – alternative to God’s design for us, alternative to the way that leads us home to the heart of our Designer.

But, we are not without hope. God provided deliverance from our damaged DNA so that we can aspire to more august things than to wallow in our original sin and declare it perfection.

Because of Jesus Christ, we are no longer slaves to this curse. We’re not bound to our sin if we don’t wish to be bound. We have the freedom to live the lifestyle He intended in our original design.

We can be faithful. We can love truth. We can think of others first. We can rise above lust,  greed, selfish ambition, and the curse we inherited when our ancestors were deceived in the Garden.

Again, the words of Dylan can be our clarion call: “By his truth I can be upright. By his strength I do endure. By His power I’ve been lifted. In His love I am secure.”

Before Jesus death and resurrection, we were chained to the DNA passed down from Grandma Eve but in relationship with Jesus, we’re free.

That’s right. We are free to reach for a nobler life than our original birth indicated. We can change our stars.

It’s not about judging others. It’s not about telling someone else how to live. It’s about the freedom to rise above the deception we were spoon-fed by the one who wants to ruin what God wants resurrected.

It’s about the power to defy our earth-bound inclinations and reach for heaven.

And when others ask how you were able to reach greater heights than your humanity would normally allow, you will tell them the truth: “I was born-again this way.”

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    The Conversation

  1. Eddie Snipes says:

    In one sense, he’s right. We are all born into sin and have this in our nature. But I wouldn’t say we have no choice in the matter. We’re accountable for our actions.

    Arnold and Gene need to receive a new nature. Though sin may be in our genetic makeup, righteousness is in our spirit.

  2. As long as we offer ourselves to sin, we will be in bondage to sin, “16 Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one you obey—whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness?” Romans 6:16 I agree that our freedom to serve righteousness begins when we receive our new nature in a relationship with Jesus. Good to have you drop by, Eddie.

  3. You said, “God provided deliverance from our damaged DNA so that we can aspire to more august things than to wallow in our original sin and declare it perfection.”

    Awesome, Lori. Thank you.

  4. “I was born-again that way.” I LOVE it!