“Jesus said, ‘You’re not listening. Let me say it again. Unless a person submits to this original creation—the ‘wind-hovering-over-the-water’ creation, the invisible moving the visible, a baptism into a new life—it’s not possible to enter God’s kingdom. When you look at a baby, it’s just that: a body you can look at and touch. But the person who takes shape within is formed by something you can’t see and touch—the Spirit—and becomes a living spirit. So don’t be so surprised when I tell you that you have to be ‘born from above’—out of this world, so to speak. You know well enough how the wind blows this way and that. You hear it rustling through the trees, but you have no idea where it comes from or where it’s headed next. That’s the way it is with everyone ‘born from above’ by the wind of God, the Spirit of God.’


Nicodemus asked, ‘What do you mean by this? How does this happen?’
Jesus said, ‘You’re a respected teacher of Israel and you don’t know these basics? Listen carefully. I’m speaking sober truth to you. I speak only of what I know by experience; I give witness only to what I have seen with my own eyes. There is nothing secondhand here, no hearsay. Yet instead of facing the evidence and accepting it, you procrastinate with questions. If I tell you things that are plain as the hand before your face and you don’t believe me, what use is there in telling you of things you can’t see, the things of God? No one has ever gone up into the presence of God except the One who came down from that Presence, the Son of Man. In the same way that Moses lifted the serpent in the desert so people could have something to see and then believe, it is necessary for the Son of Man to be lifted up—and everyone who looks up to him, trusting and expectant, will gain a real life, eternal life. This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted; anyone who refuses to trust him has long since been under the death sentence without knowing it’.” John 3:5-18a (MSG)

Nicodemus, a respected religious leader, came to Jesus under the cover of night with some questions. He had heard Jesus’ teachings and message about repentance. However, he couldn’t be seen by the other religious leaders given his position. When Jesus told him he had to be born again, he still needed further clarification. Jesus began to explain that being born again had little to do with going back into his mother’s womb. It was in believing in Jesus that he would walk into a new life – essentially having a new start as if he was being born all over again. How would this be possible? Sin separates man from God, so God loved humanity so much that he wanted to remedy the disparity between Himself and people. God took the one that was closest to Himself and gave His Son, Jesus, so that people could experience this new life through Him. Jesus, even though the cross was still before Him, was keenly aware of why he came. He came so that people would have a way out from the crushing burden and punishment of sin. Looking to Jesus was the answer Nicodemus was trying to find.


Walking with God can sometimes seem complicated. We try to keep rules and guidelines, and it can be easy to lose sight of what it is all about. We can talk ourselves into believing that if we do more things that seem holy, then surely God will approve of us. However, when we start rationalizing salvation, we miss the point altogether. It has always been about Jesus. It’s not so much about what we can do to get our lives right but what Jesus has already done for us. When we take God at His Word, then we can come to know the freedom and rebirth that is available to each and every person who walks with Him. Even if we have walked with God for a long time, let’s not forget not only where we started, but with whom it starts and ends. Walking in this truth equips us with a priceless gift to share with other friends in our lives. It’s not about them cleaning up their lives to come to God; it’s about what Jesus already did for each person on the cross. What was finished on the cross gives us a new start when we believe. It’s all about Jesus. Let’s not make it so complicated that we miss the gift He is giving.


Scripture taken from THE MESSAGE. Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002.  Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group. 

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About Hona Amer

I help people live life to the fullest. Check out my book, Smart Work U. Follow me on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram. In order to receive updates, subscribe below.

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