Jesus replied, “Truly I tell you, unless someone is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Jesus answered, “Truly, I tell you, unless someone is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.” John 3:3&5 CSB
I will also sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean. I will cleanse you from all your impurities and all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will remove your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. I will place my Spirit within you and cause you to follow my statutes and carefully observe my ordinances. Ezekiel 36:25-27 CSB
The whole Bible is God’s love story for us, His creation.
Old Testament: God created humans, but they disobeyed him. Ever since Adam and Eve left the Garden of Eden, God’s plan has unfolded to draw all humans back to Himself. There are stories of God’s people like Abraham and Moses and how He worked in their lives. There are prophets speaking His words to call to all of Israel back to Him. Many prophecies are about the Messiah, who would come to save His people and draw them, and all people, close to God.
New Testament: It’s all about Jesus, the Messiah! How He works to bring all people closer to God. It tells of His birth, His miracles, His parables, His life, and His sacrifice for all people, so that all who believe can become children of God. It guides us so we can be saved. It tells how the good news of Jesus is spread throughout the world.
Nicodemus, a Pharisee (a leader at the Temple), came to Jesus in the darkness of night. Maybe he didn’t want anyone to see him? He knows that Jesus comes from God because of all the wonderful miracles. He asks who Jesus really is. Our first two verses are the answer that Jesus gives to Nicodemus. And in these two verses, Jesus is actually quoting what God said through His prophet Ezekiel over 500 years before Jesus was even born!
God’s plan has always been to love us, His creation, and to be close to us and for us to be close to Him. God had already told the people what to expect and how it would work. God will cleanse us with water, give us a new heart and put His Spirit in us so that we can follow Him. Jesus also told Nicodemus that He would die so that all who believed in Jesus might be saved and have eternal life. That our God loves us so much that He sent His only Son, Jesus, to die for us so that we might have everlasting life with God.
This week talk to your parents about God’s love story for us.
How Jesus came to make us new, to give us a new heart and the Holy Spirit (remember last week’s devotion?) so that we can be close to God.
How Jesus lived out God’s plan to save us, to make us new, to give us new life, and give us eternal life.
How Jesus uses Old Testament prophesies and verses to teach. (Also, think about this during the temptation of Jesus in Matthew 4.)
Blessings as you are made new with Jesus!