Faith Daily | 13 April 2021
PRAYER of the DAY - EASTER TWO
whose Son Jesus Christ is the resurrection and the life
of all who put their trust in him:
raise us, we pray, from the death of sin
to the life of righteousness;
that we may ever seek the things which are above,
where he reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
GOSPEL for the Day: John 3: 7-15
7Do not be astonished that I said to you, ‘You must be born from above.’ 8The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, 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, “How can these things be?” 10Jesus answered him, “Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand these things? 11“Very truly, I tell you, we speak of what we know and testify to what we have seen; yet you do not receive our testimony. 12If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you about heavenly things? 13No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. 14And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.
GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by Graeme Curnow
(Prior to the scientific advances of the 20th C. birth was considered the beginning of life.) Jesus speaks of new birth and of regeneration. He tells Nicodemus he must be “born again”,
To begin to live life anew, we must have a new nature, new principles, new affections, new aims.
This new birth is brought about by the Holy Spirit (which Jesus alludes to in Verse 8). But Nicodemus does not get what Jesus is driving at and he is admonished for his lack of understanding.
I have empathy with Nicodemus for although I was brought up in a Christian family of several preceding generations we never spoke openly about the work of the Holy Spirit. It was not until I began worshipping as an Anglican in Auckland that I first heard of the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. The regenerating power of the Holy Spirit is compared to water.
Perhaps the Church at large should be more alert and more aware of the workings of the Holy Spirit so that we can testify to what we know and learn from them?
Maybe then we can more readily speak of heavenly things?
By-the way, in the passage V14 & V15, Jesus speaks of being “lifted up” like Moses’ snake. That snake saved the ancient Israelites for dying from snake-bite. I prefer to think Jesus is referring to his Resurrection (not his Crucifixion). His Resurrection is phenomenal, and the better sign-post to eternal life.
FINAL PRAYER: APBA 489
in whom we live and move and have our being,
you have made us for yourself,
and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in you:
give us purity of heart and strength of purpose,
that no selfish passion may hinder us
from knowing your will,
no weakness prevent us from doing it;
that in your light we may see light,
and in your service find perfect freedom;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.