Nicodemus helping to take down Jesus’ body from the cross (Pietà, by Michelangelo).
Nicodemus Is Blown Away
Nicodemus, a Pharisee, a member of the Sanhedrin, a learned teacher of the law, and a ruler of the Jews, has a divine appointment. Under the cover of darkness, he visits Jesus to ask a crucial question, which he asks in the form of a statement: “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do unless God is with him.” Jesus’ answer turns him inside-out: “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
Nicodemus cannot comprehend “Born again.” Dr. John Hayden explains in Word From the Word: Jesus uses a word with a double meaning. When He says, “You must be born again” He was actually saying, “You must be born from above.”
But “born again” and “born from above” mean the same thing. It is a moot point. I understand Nicodemus’ confusion. Double-entendres are confusing.
This divine dialogue continues throughout John 3:2-14, and at precisely the right moment, Jesus compares the Holy Spirit to the wind.
It is a mind blowing read. And just think, If the Holy Spirit quickens Nicodemus’ spirit (or yours, or anybody’s), wouldn’t you be blown away? I was when it happened to me.
Nicodemus appears two more times in the New Testament: after the Crucifixion he provides embalming spices for Jesus’ body, and a little while later he helps Joseph of Arimathea prepare Jesus’s body for the burial tomb.
I leave you with Like the Wind, a mind-numbing haiku about regeneration of the soul, and if you’re not quickened by the Spirit, I hope it happens for you one day.