Sunday 20 March 2011

Bible Book:

"For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life. Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him." (vv. 16-17)

John 3:1-17 Sunday 20 March 2011


In this passage Jesus meets a significant leader of the Jewishcommunity who, it seems, comes to him secretly. The discussion thatresults goes right to the heart of what Jesus is doing as heteaches the people.

Nichodemus seems rather slow at catching on at first - you can'ttake 'being born again' literally (verse 3) - but he is trying todraw Jesus out on what he is saying. It's about starting all overagain, and leaving behind so much of what is thought of as adult,sophisticated and respectable. It's about having the humility tosay I've got it wrong. Being "born of the spirit" (verse 6) meansthat the things of the Spirit of God come alive in you, such thingsas truth, peace, integrity and most of all love. That is a giftfrom God - like being born.

You might have thought that was enough for one night's conversationbut no. They move on to the most amazing truth - God's unboundedlove for what God has created despite its failings. That God's veryself would be sent - Jesus, God's son - in order that folk couldhave the greatest of all gifts - eternal life. Unlike so many whotry to teach others spiritual truths, Jesus makes clear that hecomes not to judge (and many people today still think too much ofGod as a judge) but to save, that is to open the door to life asGod always wanted it to be - life in all its fullness.

Not a bad conversation for late at night!

To Ponder

Is Jesus saying to you that you need to be "bornof the spirit"? What are you going to do about it?

What is there in your life that is born "of thespirit" and what needs leaving behind?

If Jesus didn't come to judge what right do wehave to do so? Where in your life do you judge others? And what doyou think might be an alternative?

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