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New Birth/Re-Birth

John 3:1-17  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Nicodemus

(NRSV)
7 But when he saw many Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism, he said to them, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
Nicodemus came to Jesus by night-many would claim that he did not want to be seen by anyone. Perhaps. Nicodemus comes to Jesus perhaps in the dark because he wants to be alone with him to discuss the ideas that Jesus brought to the people.
I want you to notice that Nicodemus gives Jesus a great complement as he calls him Rabbi (Rabboni)-Teacher. He also acknowledges that he must be of God because no one could do these things without God.
But Nicodemus comes in the dark to see and speak with Jesus and he is still in the dark. (NRSV)
3 Jesus answered him, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.” Can’t you just almost hear Nicodemus saying what? One of my favorite sayings in a moment like this is (what the what). You see someone who does not know Jesus in the spirit will not understand because without the Spirit there is no explanation.
Born of water and of Spirit? When we were born we passed through the water of our mothers womb and now we must be born of the Spirit. Nicodemus understands the first part of being born of the water-perhaps?
11 “I baptize you with[a] water for repentance. But after me comes one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with[b]the Holy Spirit and fire. () These words from Matthew concerning the baptism of water should have been explanatory for Nicodemus, he was a Pharisee which meant that he was a scholar of the word. Yet he struggles with meaning. Matthew goes on to talk about John the Baptist claiming that the great one to come would baptize with the Spirit and fire. If we are genuine and pure of heart He will give us the right to enter into heaven, but if we are hypocrites, we will eventually be cast into the fire. Both will purify (regeneration) Which do you think Nicodemus was?
(NRSV)
10 Jesus answered him, “Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand these things? Think about this troubling aspect of Nicodemus-he is a teacher in the religious world and yet he is still seeking understanding. I guess you could say that at least he came asking.
"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. Shouldn’t teachers have a better grasp of the Spirit?
Jesus coming to us, this world, should have been the best thing for all concerned, but in some ways it also caused a stumbling block; it divided the world.
31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. ()
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