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The Misguided Mentor

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lass=MsoNormal align=right style='text-align:right'>1) 10-19-08…AM…SBC     2)  “The Misguided Mentor”

John 3:1-21

Evangelism Emphasis

Read John 3:1-21

Transition:  Let’s look at the details of this amazing story…

1)    Summary of Verses 1-15

A-    Nicodemus      v1

1-      Who was he? – Pharisees

a-      Legalistic division of the Jews who were known for their rigid adherence to the ceremonial fine points of the law.[1]

b-      He was a ruler of the Jews – Sanhedrin – political leaders

c-      Nicodemus was a man that was confident that he had religion and eternal life.

2-      Why did he come to Jesus?      v2

a-      He was convinced by the miracles that Jesus did that he was no ordinary teacher but that God was uniquely with Jesus.

Ø      Nicodemus has not asked Jesus a question yet, but the implied question is…

-          Who are you then?—Are you more than a teacher for God?—Are you a prophet?—Are you the Messiah?


3:3 – Jesus’ replies to the implied questions of Nicodemus (knowing his heart condition)

·         here is the heart of Jesus teaching to which he will go on to explain in v10-21

·         Lord began with what was familiar, birth was a universal experience.[2]

·         The words “unless he is born again” could be understood in the sense of being born from above, or of drawing attention to the birth’s spiritual character.[3]

·         Jesus was speaking about spiritual birth


3- What was Nicodemus’ response?  Was he confused with what Jesus was saying?           v4

 

a-      Nicodemus clearly understood “born” in the first sense and rejected the possibility of a second physical birth.[4]

b-      His mouth revealed his heart (even though Jesus already knew his heart)

c-      He was completely confused about Jesus’ teaching on regeneration

4- With Nicodemus revealing his confusion, Jesus further explains his teaching by illustration        v14

 

a-    an illustration that Nicodemus, as a spiritual leader, would have been familiar with

b-    narrative story in Numbers 21

c-    just like the Israelites were saved from death when they looked upon the bronze serpent—Jesus teaches that people can only be saved from spiritual death by looking to Jesus who was lifted up on a cross

Transition:       After bringing Him to this point, Jesus discloses to Nicodemus…God’s plan for mankind

2)  God’s Plan for Mankind             v16-18

A-    .  The Motivation:  “For God So Loved the World…”          v16a

1-      God’s motivation toward people is love.

2-      God’s love is not limited to a few or to one group of people but His gift is for the whole world. [5]

3-      God’s love for you is evident in the cross

B-    The Man:  “…his one and only Son…” - ὥστε τὸν υἱὸν τὸν μονογενῆ ἔδωκεν        v16b

1-      μονογενῆ  - One and Only, Unique

a-      His sending into the world is the supreme proof of God’s love for the world.

b-      All the emphasis is on the astounding greatness of the gift[6]

c-      The only one in whom salvation can be granted. 

d-     Acts 4:12 – There is salvation in no one else. 

e-      We must share the gospel because many believe that other things will save them

 

Transition:  We also see in these verses…

C-    The Method: “that whoever believes in him”             v16c

 

1-      God does not leave mankind to itself.

2-      Faith has always been the means of salvation for anyone who would come to God

Transition:  This was all done to accomplish…

D-    The Mission:  “shall not perish but have eternal life.”           

1- loving the world and sending His Son was all done to provide salvation for a world lost in sin. 

Conclusion:

1-Maybe you are here today and you come before this story much like Nicodemus came to Jesus.

·         Maybe Jesus appears fascinating to you but not the unique Savior for the world – just a teacher

Ø      This account of Jesus and Nicodemus, as recorded by John, is meant to teach us…


Proposition:   Eternal life is gained by new birth and new birth comes by placing faith in Jesus Christ.


1.      Unbeliever:  In order to be gain eternal life, you must be saved.

2.      Unbeliever:  Faith in Christ is your only hope.

3.      Unbeliever:  Choose Christ today.

 

Ø      The Pharisees were right in many points of doctrine — the divine decree, man’s moral accountability and immortality, the resurrection of the body, they made one basic and very tragic error: they externalized religion.[7]

Ø      Nicodemus was a man that was confident that he had religion and eternal life because of his jumping through all the religious hoops

Ø      What do you believe is going to get you to heaven?  Is it…

·         obeying the 10 commandments—performing the golden rule--going to church—saying hail Mary’s—praying the rosary—giving money to the church

Ø      This passages teaches that though all human beings have experienced natural birth on earth, if they expect to go to heaven, they must experience a supernatural spiritual birth from above. [8]

You have to ask yourself the question:           Am I a Christian in the real sense of the word? 

                                                                                    Have I been born again?

 

4.      Believer:  Thankfulness and adoration to Christ for saving us.

5.      Believer:  Are you taking this message to a lost and dying world.

6.      Believer:  Do you look at the world like God looks at the world with love.

7.      Church:  Is our church mission minded? What are we doing to reach the lost?

8.      Church:  This was the commission given to the disciples in Matthew 28:19-20.

9.       Church:  The Church fulfills this mission when individuals care enough to share Christ.  It strengthens the church. 

Invitation:

 

 


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[1]John Jr MacArthur, The MacArthur Study Bible, electronic ed. (Nashville: Word Pub., 1997, c1997), Mt 3:7.

[2]Warren W. Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary, "An Exposition of the New Testament Comprising the Entire 'BE' Series"--Jkt. (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1996, c1989), Jn 3:1.

[3]D. A. Carson, New Bible Commentary : 21st Century Edition, Rev. Ed. of: The New Bible Commentary. 3rd Ed. / Edited by D. Guthrie, J.A. Motyer. 1970., 4th ed. (Leicester, England; Downers Grove, Ill., USA: Inter-Varsity Press, 1994), Jn 3:1.

[4]D. A. Carson, New Bible Commentary : 21st Century Edition, Rev. Ed. of: The New Bible Commentary. 3rd Ed. / Edited by D. Guthrie, J.A. Motyer. 1970., 4th ed. (Leicester, England; Downers Grove, Ill., USA: Inter-Varsity Press, 1994), Jn 3:1.

[5]John F. Walvoord, Roy B. Zuck and Dallas Theological Seminary, The Bible Knowledge Commentary : An Exposition of the Scriptures (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1983-c1985), 2:282.

[6]William Hendriksen and Simon J. Kistemaker, vol. 1-2, New Testament Commentary : Exposition of the Gospel According to John, Accompanying Biblical Text Is Author's Translation., New Testament Commentary (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1953-2001), 1:140-141.

[7]William Hendriksen and Simon J. Kistemaker, vol. 1-2, New Testament Commentary : Exposition of the Gospel According to John, Accompanying Biblical Text Is Author's Translation., New Testament Commentary (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1953-2001), 1:131.

[8]Warren W. Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary, "An Exposition of the New Testament Comprising the Entire 'BE' Series"--Jkt. (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1996, c1989), Jn 3:1.

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