Well, here I am a little after 7am and not even getting ready for class! I should be sleeping still! Actually, Nathan has had a fever for a day or two and I just can't seem to get it down or gone. I think it might be his 2 year molars, but I'm no expert. He had a few days last week too that he just didn't feel good with fever and "other" problems. So I've decided to take him to the doctor this morning. It's about time anyway, he's supposed to go around his 2nd birthday, which is only a few weeks away! My baby boy is growing up so fast!
I'm reading John 3 this morning along with a book Danny & I really have enjoyed it's called "Evangelism for the Fainthearted" by Floyd Schneider. He brings out some interesting points about how Jesus ministered to different individuals, today specifically Nicodemus. It's amazing how we miss some of the 'little' words we don't really let sink in or don't find important... like in verse 2 Nicodemus came "by night" and then he says "..we know...". Nicodemus was an important man, he had everything. Why did he come to Jesus at night? Who was the 'we' he mentioned? Verse 4 has Nicodemus asking a question that as a Pharisee he should be able to answer, because as Schneider writes, "The Pharisees claimed to be the mediators between God and man...he [was] attacked in his stronghold...[Jesus] called into question his (Nicodemus') ability as a teacher and a mediator..."
The question is this: "Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born?"
I'm fascinated by the way Jesus was so blunt with Nicodemus, it wasn't polite that's for sure. I think sometimes God has to get our attention first, maybe without it we'd just keep looking past the answer. Jesus' answer is in verse 10, "Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?" He questions Nicodeumus' knowledge, he was a Pharisee, shouldn't he know how to get to Heaven?!?! Now that Jesus seems to have Nicodemus' attention He does give him an answer. Schneider writes that Jesus based his answer on Numbers 21, a passage in the Old Testament which Nicodemus could easily understand. Verses 14-15 "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life." Throughout the rest of John, we can see that Jesus dealt with people differently. The way Jesus dealt with Nicodemus just happens to have really caught my attention today.
Sometimes as believers we take for granted what we "know". I have been challenged to read and re-read things that I think or thought I knew. Some of my childhood memories of stories are a little bit warped... I get them twisted with a cartoon version of a Bible lesson, or I take someone else's thoughts for fact instead of looking it up myself. I enjoy reading other books on certain subjects and nothing wrong with that at all, but I make the effort of always going back to the Bible as the ultimate Authority on the topic. When it comes right down to it... I want to know what JESUS meant, not someone else. Only He can save.
Have a great day!!!!!!!