For many Protestant Christians (and Catholic and Orthodox Christians too), there is a clear and necessary connection that John 3:3 (“Jesus replied, ‘Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.'”) has with John 3:16 (“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”).
Yet, there is another verse in John that is not always connected to the aforementioned two which will have a powerful impact for Christians who desire to live an abundant life today, and not just see this life as a way-station for the next. John 17:3 says, “Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ….”
Eternal life is living life in deep communion with God and Jesus through the Holy Spirit; not simply knowing where you are going to live when you die. By connecting necessarily all three of the above verses together, the Christian will realize that eternal life, and the kingdom of God, has begun in their lives today. This life is not a way-station for the next. This today-eternal life is the critical part of really being born again, because it shows forth that God’s will can be done on earth as it is heaven. It shows how heaven has indeed come to earth in Jesus. It emphasizes that Christ is really human and divine, and that we are like him in our resurrected life.
(c) Paul Dordal, 2016