Jesus and Nicodemus
1There was a man named Nicodemus who was a Pharisee and a Jewish leader. 2One night he went to Jesus and said, “Sir, we know that God has sent you to teach us. You could not work these miracles, unless God were with you.”3Jesus replied, “I tell you for certain that you must be born from above before you can see God’s kingdom!”
4Nicodemus asked, “How can a grown man ever be born a second time?”
I tell you for certain that before you can get into God’s kingdom, you must be born not only by water, but by the Spirit. 6Humans give life to their children. Yet only God’s Spirit can change you into a child of God. 7Don’t be surprised when I say that you must be born from above. 8Only God’s Spirit gives new life. The Spirit is like the wind that blows wherever it wants to. You can hear the wind, but you don’t know where it comes from or where it is going.
9“How can this be?” Nicodemus asked.
How can you be a teacher of Israel and not know these things? 11I tell you for certain that we know what we are talking about because we have seen it ourselves. But none of you will accept what we say. 12If you don’t believe when I talk to you about things on earth, how can you possibly believe if I talk to you about things in heaven?
13No one has gone up to heaven except the Son of Man, who came down from there. 14And the Son of Man must be lifted up, just as that metal snake was lifted up by Moses in the desert. 15Then everyone who has faith in the Son of Man will have eternal life. 16God loved the people of this world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who has faith in him will have eternal life and never really die. 17God did not send his Son into the world to condemn its people. He sent him to save them!
We recently had to get a new washer. The previous one was condemned – useless, not longer able to do what was asked of it. Our white goods are easily disposable and easily replaceable. They go wrong, we get rid.
Not so with people. Things go wrong, we have to try and make them right again.
That was what Jesus came for. To put right what has gone wrong in the world; to show another way, if only people will listen; to give the chance to start again.
Nicodemus asks searching questions of Jesus. He sees God in him, but is trying to work it all out.
Jesus tells him that he has to start again – a different way. Like being born all over again in to a different way of life.
Jesus is the only one who has shared heaven with God. He has come now to share that on earth. To show and share God’s love – that we too may share in God’s ways.
God sees that things have gone wrong, but he doesn’t want to condemn us, to dispose of us. He loves us and wants life to be better for all people.
Jesus hasn’t come to condemn us, but to save us – every one of us. Will we let him?
Thank you Lord
for loving me.
Thank you Jesus
for being willing to come to earth
to show the depth of your love.
Thank you that your offer of love
and a new start
is for each and every one of us.
Thank you for inviting us
to live again,
to live your way.
May we receive your love
and your life
and every day.