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About-Him Devotional 02-15-03
The life of Christ, from His baptism to His ascension, following the Harmony of the Gospels.
The Discourse on the New Birth -  John 3:1-21
 1 ¶ There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews:
2  The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.
3  Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
Nicodemus was a Pharisee and a member of the Sanhedrin court. He obviously had observed many of the miracles that Jesus had performed.  He came to Jesus by night to learn more. His opened the conversation by stating that Jesus was a teacher sent from God. I believe that Jesus, knowing what was in the hearts of men, answered what was really on the mind of Nicodemus. How do I enter the kingdom of God? How can I be assured of eternal life?
5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
Nicodemus could not comprehend how a man could be born the second time. Jesus then explained that to be "born again" was to be "born of the water and the Spirit" and that this was a requirement for entering the kingdom of God. Jesus further explained that he was speaking of heavenly things as opposed to the things of the flesh. What exactly does it mean to be born of the water and the Spirit? Does the water refer to human birth or to water baptism? For our thoughts on this see:
Jesus continued in verse 11 to tell Nicodemus that he had come down from heaven, and was in fact still in heaven, and was only telling him what he had seen and heard. He then used the figure of the Brazen Serpent that had been raised in the wilderness as a type of His impending death on the cross. This indicated that entrance into the kingdom would be by faith in His broken body which was to be raised above the earth.
14  And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
15  That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17  For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
18  He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
Conclusion: Being born again is not an option , it is an absolute. Jesus said it, we must obey it. We must be born anew, from above.  We are born again by the word (I Peter 1:23). "Whosoever  believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God..." (I John 5:1).  Born again people are known by their love for each other and for others ( John 13:35; I John 4:7). The born again person lives above sin (I John 3:9; 5:18) and overcomes the world (I John  5:4).
Next Week: The Early Judean Ministry and The Waters of Life
  In About-Him
New The Birth of the Water and the Spirit   Does  the birth of the water refer to our human birth or our water baptism?
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Mom and Dad went to a restaurant one evening. Dad was about halfway finishing his meal when took a hard look at the potato. He called the waitress and said, "This potato is bad."
The waitress picked it up, smacked it, and put it back on the plate, then said, "If that potato causes any more trouble just let me know."
Something to Consider
If everything is coming your way, you are probably in the wrong lane.
Keep Looking Up!
Don & Marie Spooner
About Him! Ministries

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