In Today's Reading:
Deity of Christ; John the Baptist; Jesus as the Lamb of God; first miracle in Cana; cleansing of the Temple; Nicodemus
There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night (John 3:1-2). This prominent rabbi probably wanted an uninterrupted conversation with Jesus, so he chose to see Him at night. He was a member of the Sanhedrin, the council which controlled the religious life of Israel, yet he confessed to Jesus: Rabbi, we know that Thou art a teacher come from God (3:2).
Jesus said to Nicodemus: Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh (human parents) is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit (sons of God v. 1:12) (3:5-6). Ye must be born again (3:7) of God (1:13). Ye have purified your souls . . . Being born again . . . by the Word of God (I Peter 1:22-23). To illustrate how essential it is to be born again (receive eternal life), Jesus reminded him of when the Israelites, near the end of their 40 years of wilderness wandering, once again complained about their circumstances. So, the Lord sent fiery serpents among them. Thousands of people died. When the people cried out to God, He commanded Moses to make a serpent of brass and lift it up on a pole. The people could only be healed by turning their eyes and looking up at the brazen serpent (Numbers 21:5-9). Jesus then said: As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have eternal life (John 3:14-15). He that believeth on Him is not condemned (judged): but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the Name of the Only Begotten Son of God (3:18). That serpent was made of brass since brass is a biblical symbol of judgment.
The one who is born again of the Holy Spirit loves the things he once ignored, and he now hates the things he once desired. When we were born the first time, we received the sinful nature which was inherited from Adam. When we are born again into the family of God, we receive His divine nature. Therefore: Walk as children of light: (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord (Ephesians 5:8-10).
1:5 the darkness comprehended it not = the unbelieving world that cannot see its need for a Savior; 1:39 tenth hour = 4 p.m. by Jewish time, two hours before evening.
For John 1:23: See Isaiah 40:3; Malachi 3:1. John 2:17: See Psalm 69:9.
Pray for our Military worldwide · The Arabic International Shortwave Radio Broadcast sponsored by Mary Hoffmeyer · The Spanish International Shortwave Radio Broadcast in memory of Ervin Byrns Woodruff, Jr. · Staff: Dr. John A Hash Government Officials [listed on their Birthdays] and the states they represent: Rep. Darrell Issa (CA) and Rep. John Spratt (SC) Country: Senegal (10 million) in western Africa Major language: French Religious freedom 92% Muslim; 4% animism and ancestor worship; 3% Roman Catholic; .1% Protestant Prayer Suggestion: Ask the Lord to be merciful and to forgive your sins (Psalm 25:6-7).
Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 6:33