Peter Barnes: The Son of Man Came to This World, John 3:9-15 (Sunday 14 June 2020 Evening Service, 6.00 a.m.)
Being born of the Spirit leads to believing in Christ.
1. We ought to know our need to be reborn of the Spirit.
– 3:9-10. That is Nicodemus’ second question (see 3:4). There is much about God that is hard, even impossible,
to fathom – Job 11:7-8. But Jesus does not put being born again of the Spirit in that category.
– 3:11-12. The ‘we’ in verse 11 could be the Persons of the Trinity, or the apostles and prophets, or just the royal plural.
– John 16:13-14. It is the Holy Spirit’s task not to save but to make salvation known. That is an earthly, or basic, teaching.
2. The Son of Man descended from heaven.
– 3:13. People want to know about heaven – or they say they do. So they opt for ouija boards, near-death stories, tarot cards, public opinion, eulogies at funerals, star signs. Jesus is the only one who has descended from heaven to tell us what it is like.
– Dan.7:13-14. Jesus tells Nicodemus that He is that Son of Man, the king of the kingdom of God, who has come to earth.
– John 6:61-62; 1 Cor.15:47. For verse 13b as a possible reading, see Matt.18:20; 28:20. Augustine: ‘Born of a mother, not quitting the Father’.
3. The Son of Man died on the cross to bring eternal life.
– 3:14-15; Num.21:4-9; Gal.3:13. It is a work of substitution. The king dies for His subjects.
– Nicodemus seems to have come to faith – John 7:50-52; 19:38-42.