Now there was a Pharisee, a man named Nicodemus who was a member of the Jewish ruling council. He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with him.”
John 3:1-2 (NIV)
The words that once had guarded faith and fastened up life’s promise and the future hope in a written code, seemed now as frazzled stitches of a tired old wineskin,1 unfit to receive and hold, with confidence, the newer outpourings of the Spirit.
How much of truth remains in this treasury of words with which we Pharisees, age-old custodians of the law, engage in false exchanges?2 Could it be that a truer Word, more sacred and more glorious,3 while enlightening the old, has come to us, being spoken now, in our own day, with a power and authority diverse and foreign to its Galilean tongue?
I move quickly, while the darkness shields me under night’s seclusion and from the day’s aberration, to enter into the presence of that Light which is ‘the light of all mankind’.4
He spoke to me of the wind that combs the crowded rows of springtime barley and greets the flowers which grace the summer meadow; that shakes and scatters and rakes the autumn leaves and howls through the trees that haunt dead winter’s wastes; that ruffles the reverent robes the proud Pharisee wears, ‘to be seen of men’5 – but no man sees the wind.6
I marvelled how a man can be reborn,7 as a child of light from this dark world concealed. Yet, baring in the world the Spirit’s works, the renewed so walk,8 that the reign of God advances with each step.
For so great was the Father’s care for this wayward world, that he sent forth the Son of his love, who assumed and healed our fallenness, that all who have faith in him may be reborn and cross from death unto life everlasting.9
Loving Father, help us to grow in the grace and knowledge of your Son, Jesus, so that the Kingdom of God may advance in the world and be revealed in us, who walk no longer in darkness but as children of Light. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Study by Richard Dempsey
1 Mark 2:22
2 Matthew 23:23
3 2 Corinthians 3:11
4 John 1:4
5 Matthew 23:5
6 John 3:8
7 John 3:7
8 Galatians 5:25
9 John 3:16
About the writer:
Richard Dempsey is a Minister in Grace Communion International.
Grace Communion Cambridgeshire
Farcet Village Hall
Except on the first Saturday of each month when they meet at Comberton, Cambridge at 2pm
Comberton Village Hall
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