In part one, Nicodemus and Jesus discussed what it meant to be born again. That occurred at the time of Passover. In part two we find ourselves at the feast of Tabernacles where many are trying to ascertain who Jesus is and whether His claims are true. In part three, we will end up where we commenced, at Passover. The timing of the feasts and the critical events in the ministry of Jesus is of great importance as we shall see in the closing article.
Sometimes, someone hears the gospel and they think about the implications. A seed is planted. Then someone else shares something about the good news with them and again explains who Jesus is and what He did, and the seed is watered. Finally, someone else may meet the same person and tell them how Jesus is the Messiah and they come to faith in Him. The seed that was planted and watered has now been planted and will never be uprooted since they are now trusting in the Saviour, not in themselves.
In John 7:40 some responded by saying “Truly this is the Prophet”. Those individuals clearly identified Jesus as the Prophet who Moses said would be like him (Deuteronomy 18:15-22). Others wondered how Messiah could come from Galilee and quoted Micah 5:2 which tells us that Messiah would come from Bethlehem Ephrathah from the tribe of Judah and would be the Ruler of Israel and whose origins would be from old, from everlasting.
Interestingly, in this instance the objection arose from the chief priests and the Pharisees. However the officers said, “No one ever spoke like this man (John 7:46).” Nicodemus responded by asking them whether their law judges a man before it hears him and knows what it is doing? This is the basis of our Judeo-Christian heritage in English law which has the principle of being innocent before proven guilty, not the other way around.
Let’s put the pieces together. Firstly, Jesus was the Prophet Like Moses (Deuteronomy 18:15-22). Secondly, Jesus was born in Bethlehem and from the tribe of Judah (Micah 5:2). Thirdly and astonishingly, Isaiah 9:1-7 spoke clearly of those in Galilee seeing a great light and of a Son- a Child who from the increase of His government and peace, there would be no end…