John 3

Jesus and Nicodemus

1There was a man from the
Pharisee(s): In Judaism a religious sect that followed the whole written and oral law
Pharisees b named Nicodemus, c a ruler d of the
Jew(s): In Jn the term Jews usually indicates those in Israel who were opposed to Jesus, particularly the Jewish authorities in Jerusalem who led the nation.
2 This man came to Him at night and said, “
Rabbi: The Hebrew word Rabbi means my great one; it is used of a recognized teacher of the Scriptures.
Rabbi, g we know that You have come from God h as a teacher, i for no one could perform these signs You do unless God were with him.” j

3 Jesus replied,
I assure you: This is a phrase used only by Jesus to testify to the certainty and importance of His words; in Mt, Mk and Lk it is literally Amen, I say to you, and in Jn it is literally Amen, amen, I say to you.
I assure you: Unless someone is born again,
The same Gk word can mean again or from above (also in v. 7).
m he cannot see the kingdom of God.

4“But how can anyone be born when he is old?” Nicodemus asked Him. “Can he enter his mother’s womb a second time and be born?”

5 Jesus answered, “I assure you: Unless someone is born o of water and the Spirit,
Or spirit, or wind; the Gk word pneuma can mean wind, spirit, or Spirit, each of which occurs in this context.
q he cannot enter the kingdom of God.
6 Whatever is born of the flesh r is flesh, and whatever is born of the Spirit s is spirit. 7Do not be amazed that I told you that you
The pronoun is pl in Gk.
must be born u again.
8 The wind
The Gk word pneuma can mean wind, spirit, or Spirit, each of which occurs in this context.
blows where it pleases, and you hear its sound, but you don’t know where it comes from or where it is going. w So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.x

9 “How can these things be?” asked Nicodemus.

10 “Are you a teacher
Or the teacher
of Israel and don’t know these things?
Jesus replied.
11“I assure you: z We speak what We know and We testify to what We have seen, but you
In Gk, the word you is pl here and throughout v. 12.
do not accept Our testimony.
The pronouns we and our refer to Jesus and His authority to speak for the Father.
12 If I have told you about things that happen on earth and you don’t believe, how will you believe if I tell you about things of heaven? 13No one has ascended ac into heaven ad except the One who descended from heaven ae – the
Son of Man: The most frequent title Jesus used for Himself; Dn 7:13
Son of Man.
Other mss add who is in heaven
14Just as Moses ai lifted up the snake in the wilderness, aj so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15so that everyone who believes in Him will
Other mss add not perish, but
have eternal life. al

16 “For God loved am the world
I assure you: This is a phrase used only by Jesus to testify to the certainty and importance of His words; in Mt, Mk and Lk it is literally Amen, I say to you, and in Jn it is literally Amen, amen, I say to you.
in this way:
The Gk word houtos, commonly translated in Jn 3:16 as “so” or “so much” occurs over 200 times in the NT. Almost without exception it is an adverb of manner, not degree (for example, see Mt 1:18). It only means “so much” when modifying an adjective (see Gl 3:3; Rv 16:18). Manner seems primarily in view in Jn 3:16, which explains the HCSB‘s rendering.
He gave His
One and Only: Or one of a kind, or incomparable, or only begotten; the Greek word can refer to someone's only child such as in Lk 7:12; 8:42; 9:38. It can also refer to someone's special child as in Heb 11:17.
One and Only aq Son, ar so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. as
17 For God did not send His Son into the world that He might condemn at the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 Anyone who believes in Him is not condemned, but anyone who does not believe is already condemned, au because he has not believed in the name av of the One and Only Son aw of God.

19 “This, then, is the judgment: The light ax has come into the world, ay and people loved darkness rather than the light because their deeds were evil. 20 For everyone who practices wicked things hates az the light and avoids it,
Lit and does not come to the light
so that his deeds bb may not be exposed.
21 But anyone who lives by
Lit who does
the truth comes to the light, so that his works bd may be shown to be accomplished by God.
It is possible that Jesus’ words end at v. 15. Ancient Gk did not have quotation marks.

Jesus and John the Baptist

22 After this, Jesus and His disciples went to the Judean countryside, where He spent time with them and baptized. 23 John bf also was baptizing in Aenon near Salim, because there was plenty of water there. People were coming and being baptized, 24 since John had not yet been thrown into prison. bg

25 Then a dispute arose between John’s disciples bh and a Jew
Other mss read and the Jews
about purification. bj
26 So they came to John and told him, “Rabbi, bk the One you testified about, and who was with you across the Jordan, bl is baptizing – and everyone is flocking to Him.” bm

27 John responded, “No one can receive a single thing unless it’s given to him from heaven. 28 You yourselves can testify that I said, ‘I am not the
Messiah: Or the Christ; the Greek word Christos means "the anointed one".
Messiah, bo but I’ve been sent ahead of Him.’ bp
29 He who has the bride bq is the groom. But the groom’s friend, who stands by and listens for him, rejoices greatly
Lit with joy rejoices
at the groom’s voice. So this joy bs of mine is complete.
30 He must increase, but I must decrease.”

The One from Heaven

31 The One who comes from above bt is above all. The one who is from the earth is earthly and speaks in earthly terms.
Or of earthly things
The One who comes from heaven is above all. bv
32He testifies bw to what He has seen and heard, yet no one accepts His testimony. 33 The one who has accepted His testimony has affirmed that God is true. bx 34 For God sent Him, and He speaks God’s words, since He
Other mss read since God
gives the Spirit bz without measure.
35 The Father loves the Son ca and has given all things into His hands. cb 36 The one who believes in the Son has eternal life, but the one who refuses to believe in the Son will not see life; instead, the wrath of God remains on him. cc
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