Study of John 3:1-8 ~ John Lesson 4 Day 2
3 a. After dark one night, Nicodemus came to visit Jesus.
Nicodemus was a Pharisee and a member of the religious governing body of the Jews known as the Sanhedrin. We also know he was rich because on the costly spices he brought to anoint the body of Jesus for burial (John 19:39).
His visit to Jesus at night could be interpreted in two ways: Was he afraid or embarrassed because of his peers, or was he using wisdom to escape persecution? Either way, as a Pharisee, his view of Jesus was different. He came seeking
Jewish DNA doesn’t entitle or enable anyone to see spiritual truths or enter the kingdom of God. “The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned.” 1 Corinthians 2:14 ESV
b. “How can an old man go back into his mother’s womb and be born again?” John 3:4 NLT
Nicodemus should have known there was some other interpretation. Maybe
The figure of the new birth, if it had been meant only of Gentile proselytes to the Jewish religion, would have been intelligible enough to Nicodemus, being quite in keeping with the language of that day; but that Jews themselves should need a new birth was to him incomprehensible.
4 “That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” John 3:6
If it was even possible for a man to go back into his mother’s womb and experience another natural birth, it won’t accomplish anything. He will still have the same tendencies and passions.
Flesh: A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature describes the word this way: “the physical body as functioning entity; in Paul’s thought esp., all parts of the body constitute a totality known as flesh, which is dominated by sin to such a degree that wherever flesh is, all forms of sin are likewise present, and no good thing can live.”
Other versions translate the word flesh in the following ways:
- The physical is merely physical (AMP)
- Human life (NLT)
- The part of a baby we can touch. (MSG)
Psalm 51:5 David wrote, “For I was born a sinner—yes, from the moment my mother conceived me.”
John 1:14 “So the Word became human and made his home among us.” NLT
John 6:51-56, 63 “For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. Anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him.” ESV
Romans 8:5-9 “Those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit.” NLT
5 a. Those who have not experienced new birth
- They will be condemned for their sins.
- They are separated from God.
- They will experience God’s judgment.
John 5:24 “I tell you the truth, those who listen to my message and believe in God who sent me have eternal life. They will never be condemned for their sins, but they have already passed from death into life.”
Ephesians 2:1, 5 And you [He made alive when you] were [spiritually] dead and separated from Him because of your transgressions and sins, even when we were [spiritually] dead and separated from Him because of our sins, He made us [spiritually] alive together with Christ (for by His grace—His undeserved favor and mercy—you have been saved from God’s judgment). AMP
b. “The wind blows wherever it wants.”
The Greek and Hebrew words translated wind are the same as breath and spirit.
Nicodemus wanted a concrete explanation. But Jesus shows that just as we don’t see the source of the wind, we DO see the effects of the wind. We see, hear and feel them. When someone is born of the Spirit, even though we can’t see what took place, we do see the way salvation affects the person’s life.
Yes, I know I am born again. I know in my “knower” as I heard someone say.
MY answers not THE answers to BSF study questions on the Study of John 3:1-8 ~ John Lesson 4 Day 2