A Teacher Come From God

There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”   John 3:1-3

Although Nicodemus was a Pharisee, his name was Greek in origin and means “victor over people.” He was a prominent Pharisee and member of the Sanhedrin (“a ruler of the Jews.”) In spite of his stature and position of authority, when it came to confronting the Son of God, and express his own concern of eternal life, by deciding to go to Jesus by night was perhaps because he was afraid of the implications of associating openly in conversation with Jesus. How ironic, Jesus makes people of great earthly stature be afraid to approach Him, yet, Tax collectors, prostitutes, and some of the poorest of their time were not afraid to seek after the Son of God. The Bible shows us that through Christ, God can use or show Himself to some of the most unlikely people in some of the most unlikely places to show His love for all of us. Nicodemus approached Jesus to find answers to his own spiritual questions.

For some people we may know may not yet know God in a personal way through His Son. And some of these people think of themselves as a Christian because they may have attended church when they were young. Or they might take comfort that they were baptized as an infant and confirmed. While early childhood family practices are important for a religious life, these experiences don’t make you a Christian. This is about where Nicodemus was. He knew of the Orthodox Jewish practice of the Law of Moses, yet, there was something still missing and he did not know what it was, until he was confronted by Who it was. It was then that Nicodemus realized the God-shaped void in his heart.

You are a teacher come from God—The word Rabbi means teacher and this was who Nicodemus was. So Nicodemus understood rabbinical methods of using figurative language to teach spiritual truth, so he was picking up some of the methods of teaching Jesus was using. Jesus’ response seems surprisingly unrelated to Nicodemus comments: “Jesus answered and said to him, ‘Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God’ ” (v.3). The words that were spoken by both of them epitomize where we are at even today. That is the contrast between physical life and spiritual life. In the Garden of Eden, when God began to fellowship with Adam in the cool of the day, Adam had not yet disobeyed God. He was in a state of complete innocence. But after Adam disobeyed God by eating of the forbidden fruit, a fundamental change took place. A great barrier to fellowship with God and His creation damaged their relationship. How do we know this? When God made Himself available for fellowship with Adam, as He had done in the past, Adam expressed his awareness of his disobedience by hiding from God (Genesis 3:8-10). Similar to Adam, Nicodemus came to Jesus by night . Sin has forged a insurmountable chasm between man and God. At one time it was an intimate union between God and man. Now all Nicodemus could do was realize that man’s own efforts to approaching God, through the law, and once Jesus came on the scene to model the perfect Oneness relationship to the Father, that there was obviously something missing?

Born again—The tragic result of Adam’s rebellion against God was spiritual death. Adam was told on that day he ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil he would surely die (Genesis 2:16-17). Adam died spiritually, be lived on physically many years, yet, his ability to fellowship with God was damaged by the consequences of his actions in sin. That is why Jesus’ words to Nicodemus were needed to be taken as good news! Jesus has begun to express to us all through His conversation with Nicodemus, that once were born again, any one of us can be made new, or alive again on the inside. Through God’s Holy Spirit coming to live inside of us, will restore our personal and intimate relationship with God again. And like Nicodemus, people are prone to admit “But how does this happen?” This can only be through the Person of Jesus Christ. And He is eager to forgive us of our sins and restore our fellowship with God the Father.

Jesus answered a question Nicodemus never asked. But because He is God, He sees right through our heart. He knows what we need even before we ask? And because He knows our hearts most deepest spiritual need, He doesn’t hesitate to let us know that this is our greatest need. This reminds me of an Old Testament story: Naaman, commander of the army of the king of Syria, was a great and honorable man in the eyes of his master, because of him the Lord had given victory to Syria. He was also a mighty man of valor, but a leper. And on one of their raids, the Syrians brought back a young girl from Israel who became Naaman’s wife’s maidservant. It was she who told her about Elisha the prophet from God who could heal him. Then Naaman went with his horses and chariot , and stood at the door of Elisha’s house. And his instructions couldn’t have been more easier? “Go and wash in the Jordan seven times, and your flesh will be restored to you, and you shall be clean (2 Kings 5:10). But the story goes on to say, Naaman became furious, and went away. Mad because it wasn’t what he thought he needed to do. Many people have been told that through Jesus Christ, by His death for us on the cross, we will be saved. These are the Biblical requirements we are witnessing to others by telling them about Jesus. Their response must be first, to admit, like Nicodemus that I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I need a Redeemer, in a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. The severity of our decision to be made without haste, is because of the need to see the seriousness of our sin. Our human nature is to rationalize ourselves as being good, and not like others who have committed gross sins, and heinous crimes. We begin to grade ourselves on a curve. But the Bible says, “Our righteousness are like filthy rags” (Isaiah 64:6) according to God, and that “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; Who can know it? I the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind, even to give everyman according to His ways, according to the fruit of His doings.” (Jeremiah 17:9-10) God the Father, has given this judgment to His Son Jesus Christ. Through His atoning death those who come to Him by faith, and to seek His forgiveness, the Bible says, will be saved (Romans 10:9).

Beloved friend, Our world is in desperate need of good news. Tell them about Jesus, and what He has done for you. You will be amazed at the work God will do through you, to you who come to Jesus, and obey His Word, “You must be born again.” (John 3:7).

May the Lord bless your walk with Him today!






Author: rontrujillo

Married 37 years We have six children. All of whom are adult. Three are married one of them blessed us with three beautiful grandchildren. Retired Firefighter @ Boeing Aircraft 37 years (Formally McDonnell Douglas) Born Again Summer of 1981

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