You Must Be Born Again
1Now there was a man of the Pharisees named #ch. 7:50; 19:39 Nicodemus, #See Luke 24:20a ruler of the Jews. 2This man came to Jesus#3:2 Greek him #[ch. 12:42] by night and said to him, #See ch. 1:38 “Rabbi, #[ch. 9:29; Matt. 22:16] we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do #Acts 10:38; [ch. 5:36; 9:33; Acts 2:22]unless God is with him.” 3Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is #See ch. 1:13 born #[2 Cor. 5:17; Gal. 6:15; 1 Pet. 1:3, 23] again#3:3 Or from above; the Greek is purposely ambiguous and can mean both again and from above; also verse 7 he cannot #ver. 36see the kingdom of God.” 4Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” 5Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born #[Ezek. 36:25-27; Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; Eph. 5:26; Titus 3:5; Heb. 10:22]of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6#1 Cor. 15:50 That which is born of the flesh is #ch. 6:63flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.#3:6 The same Greek word means both wind and spirit 7#ch. 5:28 Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You#3:7 The Greek for you is plural here must be born #See ver. 3again.’ 8#[Eccles. 11:5; Ezek. 37:9] The wind#3:8 The same Greek word means both wind and spirit blows #1 Cor. 12:11where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
9Nicodemus said to him, #ch. 6:52, 60“How can these things be?” 10Jesus answered him, “Are you the teacher of Israel #[ch. 9:30]and yet you do not understand these things? 11Truly, truly, I say to you, #See ver. 32we speak of what we know, and bear witness to what we have seen, but #See ver. 32you#3:11 The Greek for you is plural here; also four times in verse 12 do not receive our testimony. 12If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things? 13#Prov. 30:4; [Acts 2:34; Eph. 4:9] No one has #[ch. 7:34] ascended into heaven except #ver. 31; ch. 6:38, 42, 62; 1 Cor. 15:47; [Rom. 10:6]he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man.#3:13 Some manuscripts add who is in heaven 14And #Num. 21:9 as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man #ch. 8:28; 12:32, 34be lifted up, 15that whoever believes #[ch. 15:4; 16:33; 1 John 5:12, 20] in him #ver. 36may have eternal life.#3:15 Some interpreters hold that the quotation ends at verse 15
For God So Loved the World
16 “For #
Rom. 5:8; Eph. 2:4; 2 Thess. 2:16; 1 John 3:1; 4:9, 10 God so loved # See ch. 1:29 the world, # 3:16 Or For this is how God loved the world #
Rom. 8:32 that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not # ch. 10:28 perish but have eternal life. 17For #ch. 5:36, 38; 6:29, 57; 7:29; 8:42; 10:36; 11:42; 17:3; 20:21; Rom. 8:3; 1 John 4:9, 10, 14 God did not send his Son into the world #ch. 5:45; 8:15; 12:47to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. 18#ch. 5:24; [Mark 16:16] Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not #See 1 John 5:13believed in the name of the only Son of God. 19#[ch. 9:39] And this is the judgment: #See ch. 1:4, 5, 9 the light has come into the world, and #[Isa. 30:10; Jer. 5:31] people loved the darkness rather than the light because #ch. 7:7their works were evil. 20#[Job 24:13; Rom. 13:12; Eph. 5:13] For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, #Eph. 5:11, 13lest his works should be exposed. 21But whoever #1 John 1:6 does what is true #Ps. 139:23, 24comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”
John the Baptist Exalts Christ
22After this Jesus and his disciples went into the Judean countryside, and he remained there with them and #ver. 26; ch. 4:1, 2was baptizing. 23John also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim, because water was plentiful there, and people were coming and being baptized 24(for #[ch. 5:35]; See Matt. 4:12John had not yet been put in prison).
25Now a discussion arose between some of John’s disciples and a Jew over #ch. 2:6purification. 26And they came to John and said to him, #ver. 2 “Rabbi, he who was with you across the Jordan, #See ch. 1:7 to whom you bore witness—look, he is baptizing, and #ch. 12:19all are going to him.” 27John answered, #1 Cor. 4:7; Heb. 5:4 “A person cannot receive even one thing #ch. 6:65; [James 1:17] unless it is given him #See Matt. 21:25from heaven. 28You yourselves bear me witness, that I said, #See ch. 1:20 ‘I am not the Christ, but #Mal. 3:1; Mark 1:2; Luke 1:17; Acts 19:4I have been sent before him.’ 29#See Matt. 25:1 The one who has the bride is the bridegroom. #Judg. 14:20; Song 5:1 The friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, #Matt. 9:15rejoices greatly at the bridegroom’s voice. Therefore this joy of mine is now complete. 30#Matt. 3:11He must increase, but I must decrease.”#3:30 Some interpreters hold that the quotation continues through verse 36
31 # ch. 8:23 He who comes from above #Rom. 9:5; Eph. 1:21 is above all. He who is of the earth belongs to the earth and #[1 John 4:5] speaks in an earthly way. #See ver. 13He who comes from heaven #Rom. 9:5; Eph. 1:21 is above all. 32#ver. 11 He bears witness to what he has seen and heard, #[ver. 19; ch. 1:11; 5:43; 12:37]yet no one receives his testimony. 33Whoever receives his testimony #[ch. 6:27; 2 Cor. 1:22; Eph. 1:13; Rev. 7:3-8] sets his seal to this, #[1 John 5:10]that God is true. 34For he whom #See ver. 17 God has sent utters the words of God, for he gives the Spirit #[Ezek. 4:11, 16]without measure. 35#See ch. 5:20 The Father loves the Son and #See Matt. 28:18has given all things into his hand. 36#ver. 15, 16; ch. 5:24; 6:40, 47, 54; 1 John 5:12, 13; [ch. 11:25, 26; 20:31]; See Matt. 19:16 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; #[Rom. 2:8; Eph. 5:6; Col. 3:6] whoever does not obey the Son shall not #ver. 3see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.