From the cross back to one of Jesus’s earliest teachings.
Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews; this man came to Him by 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.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born, can he?” Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
I like the thought of no one knowing where I came from and where I’m going. Mysterious as the wind. The concept of being born again is not new to us now, but to Nicodemus it needed some explaining. Read Jesus’s explanation again. Have you experienced a rebirth? If not, would you like to?
Today is the last day of section one—the longest section of this devotional. It included all the times that Jesus used the word “kingdom” in a way that I thought had to do with how we are to seek or enter the kingdom. In section five, the final section, we’ll hear other things He said about the kingdom, but I think it’s interesting that the majority of His uses of the word had to do with How we are to seek and enter. Maybe He thought we needed more instructions on how to get in than we needed inspiration for wanting to get in. OR maybe the inspiration comes in passages that describe the kingdom but don’t use the word “kingdom.” Section two (days 27-30) is a short sampling of some of those passages.
What is your kingdom statement with which to replace your worry thoughts today?
*New American Standard Bible verses used in the book version of this devotional with permission from The Lockman Foundation.