There’s so much to talk about in this week’s lesson from the third chapter of the Gospel of St. John. There’s one of the most well known verses in America today (John 3:16), there’s Jesus’ description of the new birth and his use of metaphor for the action of the third person of the Trinity and for his own crucifixion and there’s the first appearance of Nicodemus. Over the years I’ve preached on all the other ideas but not on Nicodemus. So…
Raymond Brown points out in his magisterial commentary of John’s Gospel that Nicodemus is essentially the mirror image of Judas. Judas moves from standing in the light to being cast into the darkness in the events of the Gospel narrative. Nicodemus does the opposite, he arrives in the night, and moves slowly but surely into the light of a deeper relationship with Jesus and his Father.
There’s a model for us in how Nicodemus grows in his faith and his understanding. And in this season of Lent, as the light comes back into our days and Spring returns, that model of Nicodemus’ journey can inspire our own.
The direct link to the sermon video is here.
I am not sure how you feel about the series The Chosen, but I started watching it recently. Everyone has a backstory. I was fascinated by how Nicodemus was portrayed. And very sympathetic to how he felt.
I haven’t watched it, but I notice a few of the Episcopal churches here in Rhode Island are having Watch parties. Maybe I need to go to one!
I kind of needed some time to get used to it – but sure – definitely go to one!