Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Oct 23: John 3

Today's reading in our daily plan is John 3. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)

  • Today’s chapter contains one of the most quoted verses in the Bible: John 3:16. Let’s take a look into the situation, along with Jesus’ full teaching on the matter.
  • The first half of this chapter is a conversation between Jesus and a guy named Nicodemus. Nic was part of two groups that opposed Jesus: the Pharisees and the Jewish leadership. But he was also curious about Jesus’ miracles, so he decided to talk with him one-on-one. Because of his position, he couldn’t meet during the day and opted instead to use the cover of night. During their conversation, Jesus explains three truths:
    • People must be born again, but this time by the Spirit. This takes place when someone chooses to follow Jesus.
    • People must be guided by the Holy Spirit. Even though we can’t always know God’s specific choices, we can still follow his lead by submitting to him. This happens when someone actively decides to follow the Spirit’s leading.
    • Jesus let Nic in on his life’s mission in verses 16 and 17. He says that he came to earth to save people from perishing and give them eternal life.

SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)

  • In verse 30, John the Baptist makes a profound statement: “He must become greater; I must become less.” This should be the motto for every Jesus follower. 

NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)

  • If you follow Jesus, ask yourself what things or people you value more than Jesus. This lets you know what passions, interests, and relationships conflict with your priorities. The ultimate conflict is ourselves. A follower of Jesus loves him more than they love themselves. Spend some time asking God to make Jesus greater in your life.