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Summary: Jesus shares the answers to some of life's biggest questions

Sermon Outline:

Can We Know What’s Going On? After last week’s emphasis on mystery and humility, Jesus lays out some clear answers to some of life’s biggest spiritual questions.

- John 3:3, 5-8.

Answers To Five Big, Basic Spiritual Questions:

1. What is our starting spiritual position? We are under condemnation because of the sin mess we’ve made.

- John 3:18.

2. Why do people reject God? The biggest reason people reject God is that they don’t want to admit to their sin.

- John 3:19-20.

3. How does God feel about us? The focus of God’s mission now is not to bring judgment, but to rescue.

- John 3:17.

4. What has God done to help us? Everything He can, short of taking away our free will.

- John 3:16.

5. What if I’m not strong enough spiritually to make it? You’re not – but that’s ok because God is.

- John 3:21.

Knowing The Map: If you’ve been lost and wandering spiritually, it’s not enough to understand the map – you have to hike toward home.

Sermon Text:

Can We Know What’s Going On? After last week’s emphasis on mystery and humility, Jesus lays out some clear answers to some of life’s biggest spiritual questions.

- John 3:3, 5-8.

- With all the discussion last week about mystery and the need to be born again and start over, we might wonder if Jesus is intent on confusing us and obscuring the truth.

- He certainly brought Nicodemus to a point of questioning.

- One way that we might talk about today’s subject is that we’re lost. We use that term to generally refer to people away from God, but this morning let’s think of it specifically like being literally lost in the middle of a jungle. You have no idea where exactly you are and which way will lead you out.

- Then you come upon a map that gives you an accurate understanding of where you are, which way will lead you out, and how long of a journey it will be. This is an enormous relief. This is great news.

- It’s so much better than wandering aimlessly, tiring yourself out without making your situation any better. Now you know how bad your situation really is and what you can do to make it better.

- This is kind of what Jesus is doing in our verses for this morning. He began with Nicodemus humbling him and trying to teach him that he was lost (both proverbially and spiritually). This was necessary because he wouldn’t be interested in looking at Jesus’ “map” if he was convinced that he knew where he was and where he was going.

- It’s only after he understands his “lostness” that he is open to hearing what Jesus’ “map” has to say.

- It’s a great thing to have answers you can rely on.

- You don’t have to guess, wonder, or “hope so.”

- “Are you going to heaven?” “I hope so.”

- “Are you right with God?” “I think I am.”

- “Are you in good shape spiritually?” “I guess so.”

- Once we have Jesus’ instructions, we can have confidence in where we are and where we’re going.

- In our passage for this morning, He clearly and quickly gives answers to some of the biggest spiritual questions of all time.

Answers To Five Big, Basic Spiritual Questions:

1. What is our starting spiritual position? We are under condemnation because of the sin mess we’ve made.

- John 3:18.

- This is our default position. There is sin in the world; there is sin in us. The sin in the world came through human choice.

- Because of that, we start from the position of condemnation. And it is a deserved condemnation.

- This is a truth that is widely discounted today.

- Almost no one would admit that they are desperate wicked.

- We excuse our sin. We justify our sin. We compare our sin to others’ mistakes and render ourselves pretty good.

- But the question is not whether we’re a little better than the worst person we can think of. The question is whether we are perfect like Jesus. And I think few of us are brazen enough to say that.

- The Bible says that none of us are righteous. Not even one of us.

- We are all in need of help.

2. Why do people reject God? The biggest reason people reject God is that they don’t want to admit to their sin.

- John 3:19-20.

- Many argue that they reject God for theological reasons that come exclusively from intellectual concerns. That is possible, perhaps, but it certainly is not very common.

- The biggest reason that people reject God is that they don’t want their sins exposed. They would rather stay in the darkness and deal with the negative consequences of their sin in their own lives than to come clean.

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