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I know that many in the world consider Christians to be simple-minded, believers in fantasies like dragons, fairies, and a giant bearded Daddy in the sky. When we lived in China, those who were “educated” thought the farmers who believed in Jesus were just ignorant, unlearned, superstitious peasants.

How little the world knows about Jesus. And how little they know that, God willing, He will dig them deep, which will be to their benefit.

To prove my point, let’s look at a conversation between a religious leader in Israel, Nicodemus, and Jesus. The man had seen something in Jesus that he’d never seen before.

He said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do unless God is with him” (John 3:2).1

Please see here that an educated man believed in miracles. In fact, the miracles Jesus performed were so wondrous that most everyone who saw them knew they were acts of God. No dragons, fairies or superstitions here. Just real, beneficial, merciful works of the Creator of the universe.

Here is Jesus’ immediate response to Nicodemus’ statement, and it is something that no one but He could have offered:

“Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3).

The man’s response was, if I may paraphrase, “Uh? What in the world are you talking about?” Actually, the account in John reads, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” (John 3:4).

What would you have said?  

Because of the religious leader’s ignorance, Jesus said, “Are you the teacher of Israel and yet you do not understand these things?” (John 3:10).

Jesus was digging this man deep.

 As deeply as Nicodemus had been exposed, he didn’t walk away in a huff, never to return. Look at what he did after Jesus had been crucified. He was hanging out with one of Jesus’ disciples and decided to help with His burial.

“After these things Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, asked Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus, and Pilate gave him permission. So he came and took away his body. Nicodemus also, who earlier had come to Jesus by night, came bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds in weight. So they took the body of Jesus and bound it in linen cloths with the spices, as is the burial custom of the Jews” (John 19:38–40).

 What does this tell us? We are not clear about Nicodemus’ salvation. Scripture doesn’t tell us. But I think he was on the road to belief if not already there. The path to salvation is different for everyone. It may take time, or it may happen quickly. Everyone’s story is different. This is what Jesus told Nicodemus in that first encounter.

“The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit” (John 3:8).

Do you want to know this remarkable God? Or are you convinced you are well-educated and would never fall prey to superstitious nonsense? Regardless, when your time comes, if it does by His mercy, Jesus will dig you deep. He will ask you questions you cannot answer.

1All Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (2016). Crossway Bibles.

Gif courtesy Edge images.

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