Skip to comments.There Was A Pharisee...John 3 pt 1
Posted on 02/18/2012 7:49:10 PM PST by pastorbillrandles
There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.(John 3:1-2)
John 3 is one of those bible chapters which in my view are of an essential nature to all who are seeking God, and in need of the salvation God offers. Jesus himself is the instructor, the pupil, (standing on this passage as representative for all seekers of God) is a Senator of Israel and a Pharisee, named Nicodemus. The subject is the new birth.
But first a word about Pharisees. Who were the Pharisees?
Over the years, there has developed a serious misconstruction about who these people were and how we are to view them. Modern readers of the Bible often see the Pharisees as real bad guys, hypocritical to the core and vicious enemies of the Lord. The last thing anyone would want to be considered in modern evangelical christianity, would be to be called a Pharisee.
The Pharisees that Jesus rebuked, exposed, and vehemently denounced in scripture seem to the modern Bible reader as an almost alien species. This is because we have developed caricatures of Pharisaism, which allow us to mentally distance ourselves from any identity with them.We may be a lot of things but we are certainly not greedy, hypocritical, murderous Pharisees!
But the Pharisees, and Jesus encounter with them are meant to serve as a warning to us, for they apply particularly to we who are evangelicals . How could that be ? The Pharisees were to back to the Bible movement of the inter testamental period! They sought to resist the worldliness which was sweeping away the majority of their countrymen in the ancient world.
That virulent species of worldliness was called Hellenism, ie the acceptance of greek culture, and the repudiation of Judaism. How bad did it get? Hellenism was imposed by force, in the days of Antiochus Epiphanes, the brutal anti-christ precursor, but many Jews willingly accommodated to it , some going as far as submitting to reverse circumcisions!
At one point the High Prest of Israel took on a greek name, and a gymnasium was built in Jerusalem. We are not talking about todays gyms for physical fitness. A gymnasium was a greek school for the whole man. Athletic activities were done in the nude, greek philosophy, and the worship of the physical body were involved, and homosexuality was rampant.
Pharisaism emerged out of a godly resistance to all of that. The Pharisee attempted to take on his shoulders all of the 613 commands of the Law of God , making it his lifes goal to keep them! He believed that by doing so, the Kingdom of God would come again to Israel.
The word Pharisee means separated one. This was a serious reform movement, within Judaism.
By no means am I saying I agree with what the Pharisees would end up as, nor do I deny that the Pharisees were the hypocrites Jesus exposed them to be. My purpose is to remove the caricature of hem, so that we can realize that God is not describing some openly hateful, alien cult to us, but rather people very much like the modern back to the Bible movement, concerned about worldliness and seeking to separate ourselves from it by turning to God and the Bible.
Actually, the Pharisees were theologically closest of all of the contemporary sects to Jesus. Unlike the ruling Sadducees, the Pharisees believed in death, resurrection, angels, demons, the afterlife, heaven and hell. The Pharisees were right on board with John the Baptist and Jesus at the beginning of Jesus ministry. Because He was closest to them, Jesus critiqued them more than any other sect.
The many warnings to the Pharisees are meant as a message to all of us. Warnings against mere externalism, innovation, substitution of man-made precepts for the word of God, eye service, self-seeking, and self-serving religion, misplaced emphasis, proof-texting, using scripture rather than truly seeking God apply to every spiritual reform movement. The Pharisees were evangelical, crossing land and sea to make one convert!
This particular Pharisee served in the Sanhedrin, the senate of Israel. He was a chief ruler, and was called The Teacher of Israel. His subject was the Kingdom of God and entry into it. everyone esteemed Him as a Spiritual giant, and as a teacher of the nation.
But something about Jesus penetrated his heart, so the teacher of Israel went to meet him on evening.
to be continued
I'm so grateful that I don't have to listen to this swill from the pulpit.
Your grasp of Hebrew and Greek is just... breathtaking....
It would be better to be accurate.
You don’t sound sincere on the gratefulness part. Swill?
And yes, swill. Stuff that you might feed to a pig. But don't expect it to do the pig any good.
Self important preachers with minimal language skills maybe should focus on the gospel of redemption.
I'm directed to discern. That's what I perceive.
An old preacher once said” if you throw a shoe into a pack of dogs, the one that yelps is the one that got hit!” God bless you J random
And you didn't throw a shoe, you threw a shoecabinet, in polyglot.
And conflated stuff so bad it can't be sorted to be critiqued.
What does any of that have to do with Salvation by redemption? Where is THAT message?
I'll pray for you, too. As I pray for many here on FR.
Funny, I don't see you on those threads. Just your self-serving threads.
What is your offense? Why so insulting? btw thanks for the prayers
Parking in a no-parking zone, bootlegging a live pig in a no-pig zone (great BBQ), speaking my mind.
Those are but a few of my offenses.
Am I supposed to cross myself and say "forgive me father, for I have sinned" now?
You can't even get it right in english. Verbs and nouns.
If a man sets himself up above others and puts on haughty aires, he should expect the occasional tomato.
Not sure what your problem is. Pastor R is just discussing the idea that our modern view of Pharisees is different than the actual historical view; from what I've researched, the Pharisees were “of the people’ while the Sanhedrin (sp?) were the elites.
If you've got a particular problem with what Pastor R is saying, why don't you be specific rather than dissing him as if you know some deep revelation here that he is missing.
Nuts to that sort of superserious fake criticism. And of all people Pastor R has always in mind the eternal cost of true versus false preaching.
Discuss the issues all you want, but do not make it personal.
Personal attacks on Pastor R? Unreal. You must be channelling Ayn Rand or some other such atheistic faux POV. Go Galt! Yeah!
“The subject is the new birth.”
The subject is baptism, and why Nicodemus hadn’t listened to John or, more properly, God speaking through John. And therefore the subject is the importance of baptism, and why God commanded it.
I have no idea what unleashed the spirit of offense on this thread tonight; but I've never read such nitpicky nonsense on a FR thread such as this.
BTW, God never commanded baptism or the new birth, i.e. being born again in Christ that water baptism is a source and symbol of (while the baptism of the Holy Spirit is the vehicle by which we become born again) — God never commands that which is a free will choice.
Anyway, Lord bless Pastor R and all the nitpickers on this thread plus all the hardworking FR mods.
Well, Sontagged, I don’t know what to say. I don’t know what to say for the simple reason that I don’t understand what you just wrote. Read again what you wrote.
It is a run on sentence that adds up to nothing I suppose.
Overall just confused at why Pastor R is getting such flack for a pretty innocent posting.
As you probably know, Deuteronomy 12:32 warned the Israelites not to add anything to the Torah, but after returning from the Babylonian exile, that is exactly what they did...with good intentions, so that they would not repeat the sins that got them exiled in the first place.
Unfortunately, these extra-curricular laws they came up with took on a life of their own, to the point that people who sincerely sought after God had become oppressed by all this hair-splitting minutiae, promulgated and enforced by those who held themselves in authority. (Comparable to today's volumes of government regulations.)
This, I believe, was Yeshua's (Jesus') real beef with the Pharisees. Not their keeping of the Torah, which Yeshua himself kept perfectly, but rather all the extra man-made nonsensical traditions that did not come from the Torah at all. He was very "in their face" about those.
You are right, I agree with your take, it is Biblical. My only point was that the critique of Pharisaism by Jesus hits a lot closer to home than many realize. People “love to hate “ Pharisees, but miss the application. Pharisaism developed into the dead, tradition crusted, rabbinic commentary over scripture cult that Jesus denounced, but it originally was a conservative reaction against hellenism. At least with the Pharisees Jesus could appeal to the Word of God, to show them their error.
Yeah, but the Pharisees were pretty bad about putting their traditions above the Word of God and then getting offended when they were called on it.
True, they often did. I do not deny that. It is a subtlety that still deceives many. The Pharisee is alive and well, and not that far off from any of us. Thats all I have been saying...
As the Pharisees were the only sect ordaining rabbis through semicha means Jesus himself was one.
It is my understanding that if you asked a Jew of that day, “Who are the most righteous people around?”, they would say without a doubt the Pharisees. They had 613 laws and kept them. The problem was, it was all external. The commandments became a “checklist” instead of what the Law’s intent was - to point out the sin in our heart and our inability to please God, therefore left to cry out for His mercy and look to His Anointed One who was promised to “crush the head of the Serpent.”
This statement by Jesus in Mt 5 had to blow them away!
20 For I say to you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.”
Then Jesus goes on to show the spiritual application of the Commandments as it relates to the heart of man, leaving many to question, who then can be saved? Which is exactly where the Law is suppose to take you.
Your understanding is spot on! BTW it was by reading the Sermon on the Mount and Jesus’ exposition of the true meaning of the commandments, that I was gripped by the conviction of my need for the Saviour!
I am not trying to paint the Pharisees in a good light, contrary to popuar opinion, am only trying to get us to see that they weren’t that alien to our own tendencies.
J-sus did not fulfill the Torah. He took away from it. Keeping kosher, obeying the Sabbath,divorce,burying the dead,treatment of the Jews and Gentiles,etc.
He also violated Passover.
Laws of kashrut: Leviticus 11
Changing the laws of kashrut: Matthew 15:10-11,16:20.
Burying the dead: Deut.21:23
Violation of law: Matthew 8:22 Luke 9:59-60
I will return with other examples.
All depends on which Book is believed. It is not as if there is NO 'history' prophets, foretelling of the virgin birth of 'God with us'. The prophets already wrote down what was to come.
Isaiah 7:14 does not mention a virgin birth. The seventh Book of Isaiah has to do with King Ahaz of the Kingdom Judea. In 732 B.C.E. the House of David was facing imminent destruction by two fighting kingdoms: The Kingdom of Israel and the Kingdom of Syria. King Ahaz and the House of Israel were terrified and G-d sent Isaiah to reassure the king that he would be protected and the two armies would not succeed in destroying Jerusalem. The alleged virgin birth would not occur for another 700 years.
Read Isaiah 7:11 and 16 to get the correct context.
Clear evidence of what I said. J-sus is not the messiah and did not fulfill the Torah.
Isaiah's words are prophetic not limited as to what would happen to Ahaz, but as verse 11 Ahaz is told "Ask thee a sign of the LORD thy God; as it either in the depth, or in the height above."
But Ahaz answers 12 "I will not ask, neither will I tempt the LORD."
The 'sign' was given anyway. 14 Therefore the LORD Himself shall give you a sign: Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
Immanuel means God with us, and of course that birth did not take place for around 700 years.
15-25 is history now but prophecy to Ahaz. Just as the 'sign' was prophecy to Ahaz and history to us.
Ch*istians of all denominations are being misled. Jews know their scriptures which have been misinterpreted (on purpose)and mistranslated by Ch*stianity.
How can G-d’s promise to Ahaz have anything to do with j-sus? G-d is reassuring Ahaz that he and Jerusalem will be protected. No man-god figures in anywhere.
Isaiah 7:14 refers to a young woman, NOT a virgin.
God was not just talking to Ahaz, He was speaking even to US this day. Christ was to become that one and for all time perfect sacrifice so that the judgment pronounced upon the first rebel would be fulfilled, and... no longer was the shedding of blood required for the remission of sin. Isaiah 14:12---- and Ezekiel 28:12---- That is the point of this 'flesh' age so each individual soul/spirit can make up their own mind which path to take the left or the right. God wants all his children to love Him of their own free will. Pure love cannot be forced or bought.
A damsel, and this particular Hebrew word is used 7 different times/places. But what distinguishes this particular scripture 'damsel' is the naming of the child .. Immanuel, which means God with us. AND it give witness to what Luke and Matthew wrote all those many years later. But this is not the only prophecy by the prophets from Moses to Malachi of the Promise to come in the flesh and then the return to take a harvest.
There is no accident that Psalms 22 foretold of the crucifixion a thousand years prior to the event and even what would happen and would be said. These things are not accidents or coincidences.
No,G-d was talking to Ahaz. It has nothing to do with j-sus. Ahaz was in dire straits and needed G-d’s help right away. j-sus didn’t come around until 700 years later.
Moses would not lead the Israelites to idolatry. Worshipping anyone other than G-d IS idolatry and is to be avoided at all costs. It is a grave sin.
Perhaps you can tell me why j-sus was calling out to G-d,when j-sus was supposed to die for our sins,and is supposed to be G-d in the flesh,which is heretical and blasphemous.
“My G-d,my G-d,why have you forsaken me” is not something j-sus should have said,since he was supposed to die for us. He knew G-d’s alleged plan,so why did he ask G-d that question?
If j-sus is supposed to G-d,was he crying out to himself?
Yes God talked to Ahaz about his 'flesh' safety, and God told Ahaz about his 'spiritual' safety. Solomon wrote down about their being two bodies, the flesh under the sun and the spiritual body that returns to the Maker that sent it. And by what God told Ahaz is also instructional to us now even though it is history. Well at least most of that chapter is history.
The way I remember the difference between Sadducees and Pharisees, is that one group believed in life after death and the other didn’t. The Sadducees didn’t believe in the resurrection,.....which is why they were Sad,...U sees?? ;^)
Moses did not lead the Israelites to idolatry, but Aaron sure did. Jesus came in the flesh to be God with US, until the appointed time for Him to become the one and for all time perfect Passover. After that final blood sacrifice and the tearing of the veil in the temple from top to bottom, each individual has direct access to the Heavenly Father in Jesus name. I pray to the Heavenly Father in Jesus Name, to demonstrate I believe Jesus is the Savior.
King David wrote the Psalms 22 around a thousand years before the event occurred. Christ while hanging on the cross quoted the Psalms. Christ was NOT crying out to Himself but directing those that believe to a foretold witness all those many years before. Psalms 22 give the Crucifixion its credibility and witness.
Either He was truthful or a Liar.
If He was truthful, then volumes can be discerned from the report of His death on the Cross.
God is revealed to us in 3 persons,....one God,...3 persons. This isn’t too difficult to grasp.
Jesus Christ manifest to all humanity how we are to have fellowship with God. He remained obedient to God the Father, through faith in what He provided in His Plan, and exercised power through God the Holy Spirit.
The very same is available to us today in the Church Age.
One will never understand it until they exercise a smigeon more faith than no faith whatsoever in what Christ provided in His Judgment at the Cross.
His quoted “My God, My God, Why have you forsaken me?”, manifests His death on thee Cross. Death as a state of existence involving separation occurred when all the sins of mankind were imputed upon Jesus Christ on the Cross and Judged.
The penalty of sin is death and He remaining physically alive, while manifesting a spiritual death, bears testimony that He paid the price for our redemption.
Rom 11:25-36 0;^)
(28) As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers’ sakes.
There will come a time when all of this makes sense and all of Israel will be saved.
Praise be to God!
It was this very same concept that God used to open my eyes when I was dying in a religion based on works. For the first time in my life I felt clean, free, and had a desire to know and walk with Him. Upon explaining what had happened to me, that I experienced the "new birth", to the "minister" of the church I was attending, he opened his book and read the words of the church that officially excommunicated and anathematized me. I guess that was better than them stoning me for my "heresy".
Then there’s Satan. One God in four. Do I hear five?...
You pray to j-sus (which is idolatry)and I will pray to the one TRUE G-d.