John 3:1-17

John 3:1-17
Jesus uses birth as a way to talk about God's activity in baptism. It is not our decision or act, but rather it is being "born from above" and being "born of water and Spirit." It is God's blessing in baptism. So we say not only that we were baptized, but that we are baptized. It is like saying that not only was I married, but I am married. We live daily in the gift and blessing of baptism. This gift is the quality of eternal life that Jesus gives while we walk this earth as well as the gift of an eternal future with God.

Martin Luther in his Large Catechism said, "Thus a Christian life is nothing else than a daily baptism, begun once and continuing ever after. ... Therefore, let all Christians regard their baptism as the daily garment that they are to wear all the time."

O God our creator, dress us this day with the baptismal garment of salvation. Help us remember the daily gift of being born of water and the Spirit. Amen.
John 3:1-17 (NRSV)

1 Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews.
2 He came to Jesus by night and said to him, "Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do apart from the presence of God."
3 Jesus answered him, "Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above."
4 Nicodemus said to him, "How can anyone be born after having grown old? Can one enter a second time into the mother's womb and be born?"
5 Jesus answered, "Very truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit.
6 What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit.
7 Do not be astonished that I said to you, "You must be born from above.'
8 The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit."
9 Nicodemus said to him, "How can these things be?"
10 Jesus answered him, "Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand these things?
11 "Very truly, I tell you, we speak of what we know and testify to what we have seen; yet you do not receive our testimony.
12 If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you about heavenly things?
13 No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man.
14 And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up,
15 that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.
16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.
17 "Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.

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