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Nicodemus

• Ruling member of Pharisees.


• a Jewish religious leader

“ Marvel not…
He likely risked danger by meeting with Jesus at night
secretly.
“ • Recognized the stamp of God upon Jesus because of the
miraculous signs.

You must be • Jesus must have a strong effect in him. He stood up for
Jesus at the Jewish ruling council (7:50) and helped
prepare Jesus’ body for burial (19:39)

Born Again! Pharisees

• In Luke 10:31 – The Good Samaritan, The priest saw the


robbery victim in a half-dead state. According to OT Law,

(John 3:7) ” a priest who touched a dead body made himself


ceremonially impure (Leviticus 21:1-4). The priest and
religious Levite decided not to go to get involved
• Were a legalistic and separatist group who strictly, but
often hypocritically, kept the law of Moses and the
unwritten tradition of the elders.

Passage:
• Most of them were opposed to Jesus.

Samaritan

• A racial minority despised in Israel.

John 3: 1 – 16 A. The New Birth ( or Being “Born Again”) – vv. 1 – 12


1. Read vv. 1 & 2. By what means did Nicodemus
recognize Jesus as Lord?
– Nicodemus acknowledge Jesus’ name as Rabbi –
meaning a teacher that comes from God.
June 7, 2009 – He also believes in Jesus because of the miracles
He had done, for without God in Him, Jesus can’t
(SUNDAY Bible Study) do these miracles.
2. Read v.3. Is there any exception on how we can
see the kingdom of God?
None. There is only one way, and it is to be Born
Again.
Discussion:
3. Read vv. 3 – 7. In what specific verse did we not a joke or just like any ordinary occasion held in
see the difference of Pharisees being a teacher our lives. So when we decide of being a born again
versus Jesus being a teacher to us? Christian, we must take this seriously and do our
Verse 4 – Nicodemus spoke this ridiculous process of “part” as a Christian.
being Born Again and has shown his ignorance.
8. Nicodemus was confused in v.4. What is the
4. Jesus showing his transparency unto true meaning of “born again”? Why do we
Nicodemus, do you think the topic Jesus shared need this?
to Him is just an accident?
No. It’s not an accident. During our first birth, we were born physically with a
sinful nature. We need to have a new birth, so that
5. Do you think Jesus knew what does Nicodemus God’s life, God’s nature will be in us.
really long for? In v. 5 Jesus mentioned 2 kinds of birth (water and
Then what do you think was Nicodemus’ Spirit):
deepest need?
Yes, Jesus knew what Nicodemus longs for. Jesus a. “born of water”
knew Nicodemus’ (and our) deepest need –to be born What is your interpretation of being/having
again - unless he is born again, he cannot enter “born of water”?
the kingdom of God (vv. 3, 5, 7).  physical birth (re: water bag of the mother)
 Baptism – the baptism of repentance practiced by
6. How do you think did Jesus know of John the Baptist.
Nicodemus’ need?
b. “born of Spirit”
It is by Nicodemus’ curiosity and faith that Jesus is
What is your interpretation of being/having
from God.
“born of Spirit”?
Jesus was conversing with Nicodemus. For a man like
 Spiritual regeneration initiated by the Holy Spirit.
him, the only requirement for entering the kingdom
of God was to be physically born a Jew. To help Conclusion – Being born of water and Spirit is
Nicodemus understand His radical teaching, Jesus inseparable. * Outward rite was insufficient
used a contrast: two kinds of birth. He said unless a without spiritual regeneration
person is born again, he cannot get into the kingdom
of God (v.3). Alban Douglas says in 100 Bible Lessons:
“Conversion and regeneration are inseparable;
7. Now reflect. Do you think when God spoke with conversion is the act of turning from sin to Christ;
you, wanting you to be born again is an regeneration is being made a new creature by the
accident? Spirit’s power. It brings us into the family of God.
No. Everything has a purpose. God speaks in the The new birth is the door to salvation and
right time. When God sees our earnest heart longing consequently to heaven.
for Him, that is the perfect time when He wants you
to be with Him, not just now, but forever. Being born
again is never an accident to Christians like us; it’s
9. In v.3, Jesus mentioned that there is only one 13. Read v.5, 6, 15. How can we be born again?
way to see the Kingdom of God. Why does i. Born of water and Spirit (v.5 & 6)
having a new birth the only way? What is this
thing that makes us so sinful that having this The Holy Spirit is the one that indicates our new
new birth is the only way? – this means that we birth, not something we can do by ourselves.
have something in us that is so dirty… What is
ii.Believe … and have eternal life (v.15)
it?
Believe
It is our sinful nature. It disqualifies us from entering
the kingdom of God. • The word “believe” here does not only mean
mentally saying, “It is true.” (Satan also believes
10. What is sinful nature?
Jesus is the Son of God, but obviously he is not
The deeds which we know are wrong, yet we still do saved.)
them (like lying, cheating, hating, etc.) and We do
not have the power not to do them. • To take God at His word, acknowledge His claim on
our life, and say, “Yes, Lord, I surrender. I’m
11.Then, who has the power? Is there anything we
coming home (through the cross).” When we
can do to change this?
“receive” Jesus into our heart, we receive Him not
We cannot do anything to change this in our own as guest, but as the Lord and Master of our life.
power. The only way is to be born into a new kind of iii.Receive (Christ)… to become children of God (Jn.
life – the life of God. 1:12)

Sometimes we resolve to change for the better,


14. Satan believes in Jesus. The why is Satan not
especially during New Year’s Day, but after a few
saved?
days we are back to our old selves. This is because of
It is acknowledging and receiving Jesus as our
our sinful nature.
Saviour and Lord that Satan would not willing to do.
12. Aren’t you wondering why do we have this It is believing in Jesus with all our heart, repenting of
sinful nature? On how this thing came upon our sin, turning our lives to Jesus Christ to control,
us? making Him the center of our lives that really
matters. We are not of ourselves no, but of God’s.
Actually, we were born with a sinful nature. When the And Satan didn’t achieve these things.
first man, Adam, sinned (disobeyed God), his nature
become corrupted and sinful. 15. Sometimes we meet non-Christians who live
better lives than Christians. Do they need to
We inherited this sinful nature and have been
be saved also?
following our own ways, our own desires, which
actually are controlled by Satan. Yes. None of us are perfect in God’s sight. Since
God’s standard is perfection, none of us are
Because of our sins, we are separated from God. And
acceptable in God’s sight.
being separated with God means that we are
spiritually dead.
Then, we Christians are not also perfect in Israelites to believe that God sent Moses and that
God’s sight. Are we acceptable or not? How they may follow His servant.
can we explain this? • Jesus’ explanation and reference to Himself
through this illustration speaks about the totality
Think… who is the only creature who is perfect?
of His work: God becomes man, dies in cross and
It’s Christ, we come to God through Jesus Christ. is raised again.
Now, if we let Him control us, use us, do whatever He • Thus, Jesus’ death on the cross brings about
wanted to us – surrendering ourselves to Him. Then, reconciliation between God and man. Anyone
it is just like we have our Superman in us, carrying who looks to Jesus by faith can be cured of the
us. deadly disease of sin.
• “…so the Son of Man must be lifted up” – this is
16. Read v.8. We may not know where the wind
the body of Christ will taken up or lifted up to the
comes from or where it is going, but we can
cross. – that we may believe.
hear it, and see its effect on things.
What does this mean?
3. Verse 16 is called “the gospel in a nutshell.”
Similarly, we may not fully understand how the Holy
“For God so loved the world that He gave His one
Spirit gives us the new birth but we know he does it,
and only Son, that whosoever believes in Him
by observing its effect on people
shall not perish but have eternal life.”
17.What is the role of the Holy Spirit in our lives?

It is the Holy Spirit who caused the yearning in our God is the one who took the initiative to reach out to
heart to come back to God. It is the Holy Spirit who us, because we were hopeless and helpless to
convicts us of sin so we can repent. And it is the Holy change the situation on our own.
Spirit who regenerates us.
loved – God’s plan begins with His love and creates
18.What simple thing did Jesus want Nicodemus an eternal love relationship, not a fear relationship.
to do in vv. 11 & 12?

Accept… Believe world – everybody

B. Why we believe in Jesus – vv. 13 – 16 gave – salvation is freely given to us. We cannot
1. Read v. 13. How could Jesus demand the faith work for it or pay for it. (Eph. 2:8,9)
and confidence of Nicodemus or any of other
person? one and only Son – refers to Jesus Christ. Although
Jesus came down from heaven, so He is qualified and believers are also called “sons of God” (2 Cor. 6:18,
the only person who has the right to tell us of Rev. 21:7), Jesus is uniquely God’s Son.
heavenly matters, because He has been in heaven.
whoever – no discrimination. Salvation is offered to
2. Read v. 14. everyone who is willing to believe.
• This verse refers to an incident recorded in
Numbers 21: 4-9. Moses did as the Lord says for
not perish– to have a new nature (God’s nature), a
new life inside Him

believes – not just head knowledge, but full faith


and trust in God,
acknowledging that He created us and owns us.

eternal life – refers to a mode of life characterized


by living fellowship with God – both now and forever.
It is not simply a prolongation of our present life. If a
person is not “born again”, his spirit will continue to
exist even after he dies physically – but separated
from God, and continually under God’s wrath (John
3:36). During the Last Judgment, he will be thrown
into the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second
death (Rev. 21:8).

Some people say that we do not know if we are


“born again” or “saved” until the time when
we are about to die, or after we die. This is not
correct. See John 5:24.

APPLICATION
It is not possible for a person to be born again
and yet his life remains unchanged. The Lord
Jesus Christ said, “A tree is recognized by its
fruit” (Matt 12:33). So examine your life. If
there are no changes in your life ever since
you claimed to be saved, what does it mean?