]." (v. 3)

John 3:1-17 Sunday 31 May 2015

Psalm: Psalm 29


Why did Nicodemus feel the need to come to Jesus by night? Washe afraid of what the other Pharisees might say? Would he losekudos in their company? Might he even be thrown out of thecommunity of which he was a part? We can't really know but heclearly had heard about this teacher Jesus and wanted to know moreand Jesus didn't disappoint him. Jesus sets before Nicodemus amajor and puzzling challenge, that if he wants to come close to Godthen he has to be reborn. And here is the rub: what does it mean tobe reborn? Nicodemus is equally puzzled: how can that be he asks(verse 4)? Jesus goes on to explain about the work of the HolySpirit and how through receiving the Spirit a person can beginafresh to understand the purpose God has for their lives.

There are many people in the community today who have heard aboutJesus. They too might want to know more about him, but have thesame initial problem that Nicodemus would have in stepping out ofthe safety of the group in which they comfortable, to ask thequestions for themselves.

I heard a story about two young women in the city centre one night,who were somewhat the worse for wear. They wandered into an openchurch, and began to ask questions about the church. Then theysaid, "Can we talk to God?" "Of course," was the answer, "Shall Italk to him for you?" They left with tears in their eyes: they cameto look in the darkness, gaining courage from the drink they hadconsumed, and left their lives changed having met Jesus in thedarkness. Born again? Perhaps or perhaps just as a new-born babymaking their first tentative steps towards it. Who knows what Godhas in store.

To Ponder

  • What does it mean to you to be "born again"?
  • To what extent is it a beginning or an end?
  • What change has it made in your life? And what change does itmake?
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