TUESDAY 9TH MARCH, 2021
THEME: NEW BIRTH ESSENTIAL
PASSAGE: JOHN 3:1-10
MEMORY VERSE: John 3:3 “Jesus replied, ‘Very truly I tell you, no one can see the Kingdom of God unless he is born again.”
HYMN: MHB 468 (22.214.171.124.6.6.4.) – NEARER, my God, to Thee.
Nicodemus came to Jesus personally, because he needed to know more about the Kingdom of God. As a Pharisee, he already knew that the Kingdom would be ruled by God.
Jesus revealed to him that the Kingdom of God would come to the world (Jn 3:16), not only to the Jews but also to the Gentiles and that Nicodemus would not be part of it unless he was personally born again (v 5). This was a revolutionary concept; the kingdom is personal, not national nor ethnic and its entrance requirements are repentance and spiritual rebirth.
“Of water and of the Spirit” in v5 could refer to (1) the contrast between physical birth (water) and spiritual birth (Spirit), or (2) being regenerated by the Spirit and signifying that rebirth by baptism. The water also represents the cleansing action of God’s Holy Spirit. Jesus was explaining the importance of spiritual rebirth, saying that people don’t enter the kingdom by living a better life, but by being spiritually born.
The new birth is essential for us because it is the entrance requirement to God’s Kingdom. It gives us eternal life, makes us become new creatures, and helps us to displease flesh and please God. New birth activates the works of the Holy Spirit in us. The new birth is a gift of God through the Holy Spirit.
There are other “excepts” that must be attained before one enters God’s Kingdom. In Luke 13: 1-5, Jesus also said “Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish”. In Matt. 18:3; Jesus said “Except ye become converted ye shall not enter the kingdom of heaven.” In John 6:53, Jesus also said, “except ye eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, ye have no life in you”. In Matt 5:20, He says, “Except your righteousness shall exceed that of the Scribes and the Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.”
PRAYER: Create in me a clean heart, make me a new creature, that I may partake of Your heavenly Kingdom. Amen.
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