Summary: This is a clear presentation of the Gospel based on Jesus’ encounter with Nicodemus in John 3.
“AN UNCOMPLICATED MESSAGE” John 3:1-21
INTRO – There are some things in life that seem very complicated to some people, and relatively easy to others. For instance, algebra seems very complicated to me. Only “D” I ever made in high school was in algebra. Too complicated to me. But for the valedictorian of my graduating class, nothing to it.
On the other hand, others would consider playing the piano and singing praise choruses rather complicated and difficult. But for me, that is an uncomplicated thing to do most of the time. Then again, working on my 1977 Chevy pickup truck is a complicated thing for me. I can put gas in it and check the oil, but my mechanical expertise pretty much ends there. For some of you, tearing down and completely rebuilding the transmission would be an uncomplicated thing.
The list could go on and on – cooking, business matters, banking, mechanic work, construction, legal matters, government affairs. Living in Monticello, I am amazed at the papermaking process that happens out at the GP mill. I’ve toured the mill twice since I’ve been there and it still seems extremely complicated to me. For some, these are very complicated and difficult to understand. But for others, they are simple – almost have a “nothing to it” mentality.
For some people, being a Christian seems like a complicated matter. They get confused for one reason or another about the things of God. It may be that they’ve read some church bulletins that had some confusing messages in them like these taken from actual church bulletins:
- Don’t let worry kill you – let the church help.
- Potluck supper tonight – prayer and medication to follow.
- Remember in prayer the many who are sick of our church and community.
- 8 new choir robes are currently needed, due to the addition of several new members and to the deterioration of some older ones.
- The choir invites any member of the congregation who enjoys sinning to join the choir.
- The pastor would appreciate it if the ladies of the church would lend him their electric girdles for the pancake b’fast next Sunday morning.
- On a church bulletin during the minister’s illness: GOD IS GOOD – Dr. Jones is better.
But what I hope to share with you this evening is an unconfusing, uncomplicated message about the great love that God has for each of us, and how you can experience that love in your very own life tonight!
John 3 is the account of Nicodemus’ late night encounter with Jesus. Nic came seeking the Lord. Some have said that he came at night b/c he didn’t want anyone to see him. That may be so, but it’s more likely that he came at night so that he could be assured of some uninterrupted time with Jesus. He had some serious questions for him. He knew there was something different and special about Him. He knew that He was no ordinary man. He had to find out for himself. Evidence indicates that Nic was deeply sincere in his quest for the truth. “He was a man of high moral character, deep religious hunger, and yet profound spiritual blindness.” (Warren Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary, v. 1, p. 295)
Maybe that’s where you are right now. You have come seeking the Lord. You have questions for Him. You know that there is something missing in your life. You know that there is something different about those around you who know Him in an intimate, passionate way. And you are here this evening seeking. You are in the right place at the right time, because I am about to share with you a statement that could change the course of your life forever.
Jesus responded to Nic’s 1st statement w/ a statement that cuts straight to the heart of the matter. There is no doubt about what He is saying here. It is an uncomplicated statement – v. 3. – “No one can see the Kingdom of God unless he is born again.” The only way that anyone, man, woman, boy, or girl, can see the Kingdom of God and be assured of a place in heaven is to be born again, or born from above, or born of God. Barnes said that this “includes…men of every character and rank, and nation, moral and immoral, rich and poor, in office and out of office, old and young, bond and free, the slave and the master, the Jew and the Gentile.” (Barnes’ Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright © 1997 by Biblesoft)
It’s really an uncomplicated message. To be born again is a very special moment in your life. As Barnes put it, “It is the moment when we really begin to live to any purpose. It is the moment when God reveals himself to us as our reconciled Father, and we are adopted into his family as his sons. And as every man is a sinner, it is necessary that each one should experience this change, or he cannot be happy or saved.”