Photo by Irina Murza on Unsplash
Title: Rebirth in Jesus
Reading: The Gospel of John 3:1-15
Key verse: John 3:3
“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, the writer of this Gospel, wrote about Nicodemus who came to Jesus one evening. Nicodemus was a Pharisee who was seeking for the truth. He wanted to know Jesus and the truth of His teachings personally. He wanted to hear and understand for himself as he heard Jesus speak and teach the crowd. Even though Jesus was rejected by some of the Pharisees, Jesus did not turn down Nicodemus. Jesus knew the heart of Nicodemus, that he was sincerely seeking the Kingdom of God (v.2).
Thus, Jesus revealed to Nicodemus an important spiritual truth. Jesus showed Nicodemus the way to God.
Jesus answered, ‘Most assuredly, 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 Spirit is spirit…You must be born again!” (v.5-7)
Nicodemus wanted to understand more, “How can these things be?
So, Jesus further explained;
“No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heaven… that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” (v.13-15)
Jesus gave a clear explanation to Nicodemus of the truth and showed him the way to God, which was to believe in Him, the Son of God. Jesus made Himself known to those who were sincerely seeking and searching for the truth and the kingdom of God.
Jesus was telling Nicodemus about life in the flesh and life in the spirit. Life in the flesh is merely living in the physical realm – with body, mind, and soul. However, there is more to life than just the physical life, there is life in the Spirit, which is only found in the Son of God, Jesus Christ.
As Jesus explained to Nicodemus, we people are all born on earth with physical life – the body, mind, and soul (emotions). However, because of the sin nature, we are born on earth with no spiritual life. We are dead in the spirit, which means separated from God. “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23)
But through Jesus Christ we can be born again. Being born-again is to receive a new life in Christ. As Jesus told Nicodemus, “…that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (v.15)
To be born-again is to have a new life in Christ. Believing Jesus is to receive a new life – a life in the Spirit of God, and eternal life in Christ.
Prayer: Thank You, Lord Jesus, for giving me a new life in the Spirit and for bringing me into Your Kingdom.
Title: Jesus obeys God’s words by honoring His mother!
Reading: John 2:1-12 ; Deuteronomy 5:16
Key verse: “His mother said to the servants, whatever He says to you, do it”. John 2:5 NKJV
Jesus, His mother, and His disciples were invited to a wedding in Cana of Galilee. In Jewish tradition, a wedding feast could last up to three days. In a typical wedding, the host usually served a lot of food and wine. The host may not have expected more people to come, but as more guests came in-and-out, they ran out of wine. (John 1:1-2) Mary, like any other mother, cared about such things. She saw the need for more wine to be served to the guests. She was concerned and brought her concern to Jesus.
“They ran out of wine” (v3). Mary knew Jesus could do something to help. When Jesus was growing up, perhaps Mary had seen Jesus do little miracles in their family. Mary knew her Son well, who He was, and what power He had. So, Mary, with confidence, presented the need to Jesus. However, at that time Jesus had no intention of showing off His divine power to the public.
Jesus said to her, “Woman, what does your concern have to do with Me? My hour has not yet come.” v4
Again, Mary believed in her Son. She told the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it”. (v5)
Jesus looked around and saw what was available. He saw the six, empty, stone waterpots. So, Jesus instructed the servants to “Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim.” (v7) After the waterpots were filled with water, Jesus told the servants to draw them out and take it to the master of the wedding feast. (v8) And the master of the ceremony, not knowing where the wine came from, was very pleased that the host kept the best wine until the last day. And he said, “Every man at the beginning sets out the good wine, and when the guests have well drunk, then the inferior. You have kept the good wine until now!” (v.10)
Thus, the wedding celebration was completed with more than enough wine. And Mary was relieved that her concern was taken care of by Jesus. Jesus may not have had the intention to do a miracle at the wedding feast, but because Mary, His earthly mother, had presented the concern to Him, Jesus honored her request.
Jesus loved His earthly mother, and He also knew the word of God which says, “Honor your father and mother, as the Lord your God commanded you, that your days may be long and that it may be well with you in the land which the Lord your God is giving you.” (Deuteronomy 5:16 & Exodus 20:12).
When Jesus was here on earth, He was fully human and fully divine, too. He had the creative power that God had when He created the heavens and the earth, (Genesis 1). Like God, who created the world and everything in it from nothing, Jesus also had the power to create through the power of His spoken word. And without drawing attention to Himself, Jesus took care of His mother’s concern by turning the plain water into wine. Even when Jesus’ miraculous power was not seen by the public, He cared for those whom He loved. Jesus used His creative power to honor God’s Word and His mother.
Jesus honored the Word of God by honoring His mother. Jesus showed His love for His earthly mother as He took care of her concern.
Prayer: Thank you Lord for Your example of obeying the Word of God by honoring your mother. Help children to honor their mothers and fathers, too.