“New Life in the Spirit”
Now 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 him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can these things be?” Jesus answered him, “Are you the teacher of Israel and yet you do not understand these things? Truly, truly, I say to you, we speak of what we know, and bear witness to what we have seen, but you do not receive our testimony. If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things? No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.
Jesus gives you a new life.
“Jesus is risen. This changes everything. You go from living life as zombies who consume every living things to children of God who cultivate and give life to everything.
Nicodemus is a ruler of the Jews who came at night inquiring about Jesus’ identity because of his activity of signs. We witness the transformation Nicodemus goes through in his encounter with Jesus – from a religious zombie to a child of God who brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes for the body of Jesus after the crucifixion in John 19:39.
Without Jesus, you are the walking dead.
Your existence is characterized by consumption: consume every living thing to continue the existence.
“And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience – among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.”
“Dead in trespasses and sins in which you once walked”
When was the last time you trespassed someone’s home?
Trespassing crosses God’s design, purpose and ways in order to consume things that make you feel like God.
Sin is missing the mark or not hitting the spot. In this world of service economy, when you experience a service that misses the mark or does not hit the spot in case it was food being served, you feel disrespected or even cheated.
Therefore, living life without Jesus is a constant struggle to consume more and wanting more without truly experiencing life.
What do you do to make your life more alive?
Nicodemus observed religious rules and rituals to see God’s kingdom. What do you do to feel real or alive?
Jesus gives you a new life.
“How can these things be?” Nicodemus asks Jesus who tells him that he needs to born again or go from dead to alive.
The cross of Christ is the answer to Nicodemus’ question. How you can become born again happens when death is conquered and life becomes eternal.
New birth happens by the Holy Spirit. Just as in the creation, the Holy Spirit hovered over the waters the Holy Spirit overcomes death and darkness and brings forth new life. Just as in the redemption of God’s people in the exodus, the people of God is spared from the angel of death and through the water of judgment.
“I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you. And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules.”
And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior.
God loves you and sent his son to die on the cross for your sins. Jesus is risen from the dead and gives you a new life by putting in you the Holy Spirit.
Have you received the Holy Spirit?
What are you going to do about what you believe about Jesus?
Do this in remembrance of me – worshipping Jesus in community and living life together.
Love God and your neighbors – serving, sacrificing, and suffering together.
Go, make disciples – cultivating, giving, and leaving legacy to God’s glory.