JOHN’S GOSPEL MEDITATION # 7
- John 3:1–15
You Must Be Born Again
- Find a quiet place, alone and apart from distractions.
- Be comfortably alert, still and at peace.
- Say the Lord’s Prayer. Sing or cant the Jesus Prayer
- Pray for family, friends, neighbors, and yourself.
- Slowly and carefully read the passage of Scripture.
- Reread it. From memory, determine the central points.
- A Pharisee, Nicodemus, a member of the grand counsel of Israel, the Sanhedrin, and we find him mentioned three times in this Gospel. We see that he becomes a follower of Jesus.
- He talked with Jesus at night, and we are not sure why.
- He respected Jesus, called him ”rabbi” meaning teacher. And Jesus had not earned that status, so perhaps out of respect or something far more, Nicodemus honors Jesus.
- Jesus did signs, miracles, in Jerusalem for all to see. This came to the attention of the Sanhedrin, so maybe Nicodemus was sent by this group to find out about Jesus.
- It seems Jesus, declining to provide anything about who he is, moves abruptly to what Nicodemus really needed to hear. “You must be born again.”
- Of course, Nicodemus could not possibly understand what Jesus meant, and of course, Jesus knew that.
- Nicodemus would have thought he already was in the kingdom of God, and Jesus assures him he was not.
- The esteemed elder statesman must be born of “water and the Spirit” in order to enter the kingdom of God. And to a Jew like Nicodemus nothing was more important.
- “Water and Spirit”–likely a metaphor for radical conversion, which is something Nicodemus could not accomplish on his own.
- The how of this new birth is likened to the blowing of the wind; something mysterious and beyond the ability of a human being to accomplish or even comprehend. It is wholly a work of the Spirit of God.
- Jesus concludes the conversation by saying that He would be “lifted up” like the serpent Moses lifted up. (Numbers. 21:4–9)