We believe that the new birth is the prerequisite to seeing the Kingdom of God (John 3:3), the means to becoming a child of God (1 John 5:1-5), a work of God and not of man (Eph. 2:8-9), and an act of Godís will and not of manís will (John 1:12-13, James 1:18, John 5:21, Rom 9:15-23). We believe the new birth is an experience with God where one encounters God and that it is not obtained by, or necessarily related to, Catholic sacraments or protestant or evangelical sacraments such as "The Sinnerís Prayer", or other religious exercises performed at the urging of others. We believe that baptism is a response from a heart changed by the new birth, and not the means to obtain it (1 Pet. 3:21, Acts 10:44). We believe that in order for the new birth to be a deep and lasting experience, it must be preceded by a work of the Holy Spirit that brings a chronic or acute conviction of sin, righteousness, and judgment, and that any action that cuts short that process by bringing to birth prematurely will cause the work of grace to be a weak and shallow one (John 16:8, Mark 4:5-6).