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Nicodemus visits Jesus

John 3:1-21
Nicodemus visits Jesus and learns about salvation.
Contributed by Richard Gunther
1
Nicodemus was a Pharisee, a religious ruler of the Jews. He was an important man who loved God’s Word and taught it to the Jewish people. – Slide 1
2
One evening, when it was dark, Nicodemus came to Jesus to ask Him some questions. He said to Jesus, ‘Teacher, we Pharisees know you must be a teacher from God because you do so many miracles. – Slide 2
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Jesus changed the subject by saying, ‘Truly I say to you, if you aren’t born again you’ll never get into God’s Kingdom.’ – Slide 3
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Nicodemus misunderstood what Jesus meant. He thought Jesus was saying a person had to go back to his mother’s womb and be born a second. – Slide 4
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Jesus explained, ‘You must be born naturally but you must also be born of the Spirit – spiritual birth – otherwise you cannot get into God’s Kingdom. Whatever is born of the flesh is just flesh, the same as the parents. But whatever is born of the Spirit is brand new, a child of heaven.’ Jesus told Nicodemus not to be surprised by this. – Slide 5
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Jesus explained, ‘The Holy Spirit, is a bit like the wind. He is invisible but you can see where He is working by the effects He has on people and things.’ – Slide 6
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Nicodemus was still confused. ‘How can these things be,’ he asked. – Slide 7
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Jesus replied, ‘You are a respected Jewish teacher, and yet you don’t understand these things? I am telling you what I know and have seen and yet you won’t believe me. I speak only of what I know by experience. I am telling you what I have seen with my own eyes.’ – Slide 8
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Jesus explained how He had come from heaven and that He was the ‘Son of Man’. It was an expression God had used in talking to Old Testament prophets to describe God’s Son, the Messiah. – Slide 9
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Jesus then referred to something that had happened many years before Nicodemus was born. ‘As Moses in the wilderness lifted up the bronze image of a serpent on a pole, so I must be lifted up too, so that anyone who believes in me will have eternal life.’ – Slide 10
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‘For God loved the world so much that He gave his only Son so that anyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.’ – Slide 11
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‘God did not send His Son into the world to judge it, but to save it.’ – Slide 12
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‘There is no eternal doom awaiting those who trust Him to save them. But those who don’t trust Him have already been tried and condemned for not believing in the only Son of God. – Slide 13
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This is how God’s judgement works. God has given light to the world, but many people prefer darkness. They hate the light, they hate the truth, they hate Jesus and the gospel. They condemn themselves by their love of sin. – Slide 14
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But anyone who trusts God, lives in a God-honouring way. – Slide 15
16
In case you were wondering about the bronze snake on a pole it’s all found in Numbers 21:6-9). There you will read how the people of Israel disobeyed God so He sent ‘fiery snakes’ in amongst the people. Whoever was bitten by these snakes was poisoned and it was only a matter of time before they died. – Slide 16
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But God ordered that a replica of the snake be made and lifted up on a pole. Anyone who looked at this bronze snake was healed and lived. – Slide 17
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In the same way, Jesus was lifted up on a cross to die for our sin. And if we choose to trust and obey Him we too are rescued from God’s judgement and we are ‘born’ into His family. – Slide 18
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Slide 19