Daily Word

Seeing the Kingdom | John 3:1-3

1 Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews; 2 this man came to Jesus at night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You have come from God as a teacher; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.” 3 Jesus responded and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless someone is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

John 3:1-3 (NASB)


This is probably the most famous chapter in John and, due to 3:16, one of the most famous chapters in the Bible. It presents the meeting between a pharisee, Nicodemus, and Jesus. What’s a pharisee? They were part of the “Jews” John refers to often and usually means religious leaders of Israel. Pharisees were a religious sect who ran the synagogues. The other main group was the Sadducees. One main difference was Pharisees believed in the resurrection but Sadducees didn’t. That’s why they’re sad-u-see. 🙂

Clandestine meeting

Why does this religious leader come to Jesus? He states what probably all the Jews believed. Due to the miracles and signs Jesus performed, they knew He was from God. Yet His teaching was so radical and convicting, they weren’t sure what to think. Nicodemus was most desirous to find out; more than the others. He was willing to take the risk to talk to this rogue teacher. He reduced the risk of exposure and embarrassment by coming at night – likely so as to not be noticed.

The real question

I’m always amazed when I read this passage. Rather than listen to Nicodemus’ audible question, Jesus listens to his heart question. The real question was, “How do I see the Kingdom of God?” It may be that Nicodemus’ understanding of the Kingdom of God was earthly, temporal yet Jesus was talking about heavenly, eternal. Jesus had to help him transition from his thinking to Jesus’ thinking. He did this by helping Nicodemus understand what it means to be born again. We’ll discuss this tomorrow.

<- Reflection ->
  • What’s the question on your heart? Is it how to see / enter the Kingdom of God?
  • Consider Jesus. He knows your heart question and is ready and willing to answer. Usually, the answer is already in His Word. Study it.
St. Petery’s square of the Catholic Vatican in Rome. It’s own sovereign kingdom. Image from Pxfuel.com

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