Further to my post above, the following may also be of assistance, as it expands somewhat on what I have already said.
Subject: Born Again.
Is born again that which a person becomes upon receiving the Lord Jesus as his own personal saviour, or is it what God must do to a person to enable him/her to receive Jesus ?.
PS I am not a Calvinist.
Let me explain, The unconverted are spiritually dead, see.
1Cr 2:14 But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
This of course all happened at "The fall", see.
Gen 2:17 "for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.".. This is an incorrect translation, as it should read, "for in the day that you eat of it, dying you shall die".
That is to say, two deaths, spiritual death at the moment you eat thereof, followed by physical death in due course.
But first a suitable background against which to view the relevant words, Let us say two different worlds, or two different modes of existence, what about Physical life, and Spiritual life. Now then how did you get into this physical world. Well you were born into it weren't you?. Now exactly how much contribution did you make to your physical birth, non whatsoever you owe your existence entirely to the activity of another, namely your human father.
Likewise your arrival into the spiritual world (If you are to get there) will be due entirely to the activity of another, namely, the Lord our God, who will then be your heavenly Father. The water refereed to in v 5 of John 3, is of course amniotic fluid which is required to be born of the flesh referred to in the next verse. In fact using Hebrew parallelism, v 6 in given in order to clear up any doubt as to exactly what is meant by water in v 5.
To sum up therefore it is clear from the text that it is impossible to be saved, unless one is first born again into the spiritual world, thus enabling one to understand the way of salvation, and thereby to receive Jesus as ones own personal Saviour.. Born again can also be translated as born from above, that is born of God.
All human life starts with conception.. A seed is planted, then some 40 weeks or so later on a child is born.. The child can do nothing in the physical world until after it is born into it.
The natural man needs to be born into the spiritual world, before he is able to receive the things of the Spirit of God, only then will he be able to benefit from what he reads. How is this done?
Well ones ability to participate in the spiritual world takes exactly the same order and sequence, firstly the Lord plants His seed (not the Holy Spirit) into a person, this is sometimes referred to as "Re-generation", that is, the making alive again of the human spirit, the spirit that died in Adam at the fall. The natural man is now able to understand the Word, it now makes sense to him, the period of gestation is not revealed, it might be a long time, or a short time, but re-birth, never, never, proceeds re-generation.
Have a look now at.
Isa 53:10 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise Him; He has put Him to grief. When You make His soul an offering for sin, He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days,
And the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in His hand, NKJ.
Note especially, "When You make His soul an offering for sin, He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days,"
If I go into my back garden, and plant a seed, I cannot see it as it is bellow the surface, but in due time up comes a small green shoot, and I say "I can see my seed", what I mean of course is I can now see the result of having planted that seed in the first place. When Jesus sees you offering His soul for your sin, He sees the result of His having planted His seed in you, and is therefore able to prolong His days, which He does by taking up residence inside you, in the person of His other self, the Holy Spirit.
His seed, that is God's Seed remains in you see.
1Jo 3:9 Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God.