What I read today;
Titus 2; John 3; Jeremiah 3; Psalm 37; 1 Samuel 20; Exodus 22
Nicodemus was a leader of the Jewish religious elite. Yet he hid away and came to Jesus in the night. His position was vital to him. He liked being who he was. He loved the power and the prestige. But he knew that something else was going on here. He knew that something unique and different had shown up out of nowhere.
So he came to Jesus.
Jesus discourse with Nicodemus has been the subject of discussions and debates for the centuries since it happened. Arguments over the term, “Born Again” have taken place ever since Jesus uttered them.
Jesus told Nicodemus point-blank, if you’re going to follow me, then you have to stop fighting the Holy Spirit and allow Him to change you from within. Nicodemus, like many of his time, believed that the ceremonial law and the moral law and the worship at the temple were what was required for salvation. A checklist of sorts. But Jesus says to Nicodemus that religion that doesn’t change us from within is not any sort of religion at all.
Jesus then proceeds to tell him why the Christian religion would change so many lives. It was because the world would soon see Jesus giving his own life up for the salvation of the world. All were welcomed to be saved. Not just the Jewish people but everyone. Every man, woman, and child were greeted at the table of God!
When Jesus uttered the words, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but have eternal life.” NRSV, those words rattled Nicodemus to his very core.
John was telling all who want to set up their rules and regulations for Christian behavior, that God wants all to be saved. Not just the chosen few. He wants all men, women, and children to look to Jesus and trust him for forgiveness and eternal life.
It’s that God of love and hope that we follow and believe in today! Amen