Who Was Nicodemus in the Bible & Was He Saved?
According to John 3, Nicodemus was a Pharisee, a member of the Jewish ruling council, who came to Jesus in the middle of the night with a question for him. He heard an answer that would be hidden in the minds of Christians for decades to come.
Jesus Teaches Nicodemus: You Must BeBorn Again
Now there was a guy named Nicodemus who belonged to the Pharisees and was the ruler of the Jews. When this man came to Jesus in the middle of the night, he told him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher sent by God, since no one can do the marvels that you perform unless God is there with him.” When he asked Jesus about it, he received the following response: “Truly, truly, I say to you, until one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” “How is it possible for a man to be born when he is old?” Nicodemus inquired.
Is it possible for him to enter his mother’s womb a second time and be born?” According to Jesus’ response: “Truthfully, really, I say to you, unless one is born again of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.” When the body gives birth to anything, it is called flesh, and when the Spirit gives birth to something, it is called spirit.
- The same holds true for everybody who is born of the Spirit.” “How are these things possible?” Nicodemus inquired of him.
- Indeed, I say to you, we speak of what we know and offer witness to what we have witnessed, yet you do not benefit from our testimony.
- Except for the Son of Man, no one has ever risen into heaven except for him who descended from heaven.
- (See also John 3:1-15)
Nicodemus’ Secret Conversation with Jesus
A man named Nicodemus, a member of the Pharisees and ruler of the Jews, appeared at this point in the narrative. This man came to Jesus in the middle of the night and told him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher sent by God, for no one can do these miracles unless God is there.” As Jesus spoke to him, he stated: “Truly, truly, I say to you that no one can see the kingdom of God unless he has been born again. “How can a guy be born when he is so old?” Nicodemus questioned him. Is he able to enter his mother’s womb a second time and give birth?” “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a person is born of water and the Spirit, he or she will not be able to enter the kingdom of God.” When the body gives birth to anything, it is called flesh, and when the spirit gives birth to something, it is called spirit.
Even if you can hear the wind blowing anywhere it pleases, you have no idea where it is coming from or going to.
“How are these things possible?” Nicodemus inquired.
Indeed, I say to you, we speak of what we know and bore witness to what we have witnessed, but you do not hear or heed our words.
Only the Son of Man, who descended from heaven, has attained the status of ascending into heaven. The Son of Man must be hoisted up, just as Moses held up the snake in the desert, so that everyone who believes in him will have eternal life. (See also John 3:1-15. )
Nicodemus was Not a Spy
Nicodemus’ motivations have been called into doubt by certain researchers. They stated that he came on behalf of the Sanhedrin as a type of snoop, with the mission of tricking Jesus into delivering an official response based on the questions he would pose. After all, Nicodemus uses the first-person plural to express himself (” We know You have come from God as a Teacher “). However, there are three issues with this approach.
- In light of the fact that other Jewish authorities confronted Jesus in the open, Nicodemus would not have needed to sneak through the night to see Jesus
- Yet, he did not inquire and instead stated that Jesus was a Teacher from God. To be sure, Nicodemus later reveals himself to be a believer when he arrives with Joseph of Arimathea to prepare Jesus’ body for a proper Jewish burial (John 19:39)
- But, more importantly, Nicodemus later reveals himself to be a believer when he comes to prepare Jesus’ body for a proper Jewish burial (John 19:39).
Nicodemus was Honestly Seeking God
Nicodemus would not have needed to sneak through the night to meet Jesus if other Jewish authorities had questioned him in public; but, he did not inquire; instead, he stated that Jesus was a Divine Teacher. To be sure, Nicodemus later reveals himself to be a believer when he arrives with Joseph of Arimathea to prepare Jesus’ body for a proper Jewish burial (John 19:39); but, more importantly, Nicodemus later reveals himself to be a believer when he comes to prepare Jesus’ body for a proper Jewish burial (John 19:41);
What Else Does the Bible Say About Nicodemus?
Nicodemus warned a group of unbelieving Pharisees in John 7:50-51 about the consequences of unjustly taking Jesus. Afterward, in John 19:39, after Jesus had been killed, Nicodemus joined forces with Joseph of Arimathea to bury Jesus in accordance with Jewish tradition. He brought “a combination of myrrh and aloes weighing around seventy-five pounds,” according to the Bible (John 19:39). Adapted from Alfred Edersheim’s The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah (Book III, Chapter VI) and from the lecture notes of Dr.
Photograph courtesy of Unsplash/JamesColeman.
Nicodemus – Wikipedia
|Nicodemus helping to take down Jesus’ body from the cross (The Deposition, byMichelangelo)|
|Defender of Christ|
|Venerated in||The Catholic ChurchEastern Orthodox ChurchOriental Orthodox ChurchAnglican ChurchLutheran Church|
|Feast||2 August (Eastern Orthodox ChurchByzantine-rite Catholic Churches) 3 August (Roman-rite Catholic Church)Third Sunday ofPascha(Eastern Orthodox ChurchByzantine-rite Catholic Churches) 31 August (Roman-rite Catholic Church)|
Nicodemus (; Greek: o, translit.Nikódmos) was a Pharisee and a member of the Sanhedrin, and he is named in the Gospel of John in three different places:
- He initially comes to Jesus in the middle of the night to discuss Jesus’ teachings (John 3:1–21)
- Then he meets Jesus again the next day to discuss Jesus’ teachings (John 3:1–21). It is the second time that Nicodemus is said that he tells his fellow members of the Sanhedrin (the Jewish court system) that the law demands that a person be heard before being condemned (John 7:50–51)
- The final character to appear is Nicodemus, who arrives after theCrucificationof Jesus to bring the traditional embalming spices and to assistJoseph of Arimathea in preparing the corpse of Jesus for burial (John 19:39–42).
It is believed that an apocryphal work bearing his name—theGospel of Nicodemus—was written in the mid-4th century, and it is mostly a reworking of the earlierActs of Pilate, which describes theHarrowing of Hell. Ochser and Kohler (in an article in The Jewish Encyclopedia) and other historians have argued that Nicodemus may be the same person asNicodemus ben Gurion, who is recorded in the Talmud as a wealthy and popular holy man claimed to have had magical powers. Those who disagree with this interpretation point out that the biblical Nicodemus was probably an older man at the time of his encounter with Jesus, whereas Nicodemus ben Gurion arrived on the scene 40 years later, during the Jewish War.
In John’s Gospel
Nicodemus, like Lazarus, does not belong to the tradition of the Synoptic Gospels and is only addressed by John, who devotes more than half of Chapter 3of his gospel and a few lines of Chapter 7to Nicodemus, and who references him for the final time inChapter 19. It is revealed that Nicodemus is a Pharisee who comes to visit Jesus in the middle of the night the first time he is mentioned. According to the scriptures, Jesus traveled to Jerusalem to participate in the Passover festival. The moneychangers from the temple were ejected and their tables were thrown to the ground during his visit to Jerusalem.
Because no one could achieve the miracles you are performing unless God was present with them.” (See also John 3:2).
Then there’s a dialogue with Nicodemus about what it means to be “born again” or “born from above” (Greek: v) and what it means in practical terms: In his discussion with Nicodemus, the idea of being actually born again from one’s mother’s womb is explored; nonetheless, most theologians agree that Nicodemus understood Jesus was not speaking about literal rebirth.
- ‘You cannot mean that a guy is going to be born for the second time after entering his mother’s womb the first time.
- In response to the “ateacher of Israel,” Jesus expresses amazement, possibly sarcastically, that he does not comprehend the notion of spiritual rebirth: 3:10–11 (John 3:10-11.) Is it possible that you are a master of Israel and are unaware of these things?
- KJV Nicodemus is described by James F.
- In Chapter 7, Nicodemus counsels his colleagues, who are referred to as “the chief priests and the Pharisees,” to listen carefully and thoroughly before reaching a judgment on Jesus.
- Nonetheless, it seems likely that he had some kind of influence on the Sanhedrin during his time there.
Nicodemus must have been a wealthy man, according to Pope Benedict XVI, who writes in his bookJesus of Nazareth: Holy Week that “the quantity of thebalm is enormous and transcends all natural proportions, indicating that this is a royal funeral.”
Veneration and liturgical commemoration
Nicodemus is revered as a saint in the Eastern Orthodox Churches as well as the Catholic Church. Several churches, including the Eastern Orthodox and Byzantine-rite Catholic churches, commemorate Nicodemus on theSunday of the Myrrhbearers, which is celebrated on theThird Sunday of Pascha (i.e., the second Sunday after Easter), as well as 2 August, the date on which it is believed that his relics, as well as those of Stephen the Protomartyr and Gamaliel, were discovered. The feast of the discovery of their remains is commemorated on the next day, August 3, according to the traditional Roman-rite Catholic liturgical calendar.
In Ramla, the Franciscan Order built a church dedicated to Saints Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea under the patronage of the saints.
Nicodemus appears significantly in medieval images of the Deposition, in which he and Joseph of Arimathea are seen taking the dead Christ from the cross, typically with the assistance of a ladder, and burying him in the tomb. Like Joseph, Nicodemus became the subject of several religious traditions during the Middle Ages, notably in association with massive crosses, which he shared with Joseph. His carvings of theHoly Face of Lucca and theBatlló Crucifix were said to have been aided by angels, with the face in particular receiving divine help, and therefore becoming examples ofacheiropoieta (angelic assistance).
Medieval images of the Deposition frequently have Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea lifting the dead Christ off the cross, which is frequently accomplished with the use of a ladder. When it came to the Middle Ages, Nicodemus was the subject of a variety of religious traditions, many of which were connected to memorial crosses. His carvings of theHoly Face of Lucca and theBatlló Crucifix were said to have been aided by angels, with the face in particular, and therefore became examples of acheiropoieta (angelic help).
In the Lutheran prescribed readings of the 18th century, the gospel passage of Jesus’ meeting with Nicodemus in the middle of the night was allocated to the Sunday before Trinity. Johann Sebastian Bach produced many cantatas for the event, the most notable of which being O heilges Geist- und Wasserbad, BWV 165, composed in 1715 and based on a libretto by the court poet in Weimar, Salomo Franck, and remaining faithful to the gospel. In 1937, Ernst Pepping produced an Evangelienmotette (moteton gospel text) for the characters Jesus and Nikodemus.
Tim Curry recorded a cover version of the song for his debut album, Read My Lips, in 1978.
A very casual version of the connection between Nicodemus and Jesus may be found in the song “Help Yourself” by The Devil Makes Three, which is available on iTunes. Nicodemus is mentioned in the second stanza of the song “Help yourself,” which was performed by The Devil Makes Three (band).
In Persuaded: The Story of Nicodemus, author David Harder tells the story of Nicodemus, a real fictitious character from Greek history. With the goal of maintaining historical and scriptural accuracy, Harder based his novel on events and timetables found in the pages of the Passion Translationversion of the Bible. He also brought biblical characters to life in a realistic story with the goal of keeping his book historically and scripturally accurate.
During the Protestant vs. Catholic struggle
According to author David Harder, his historical novel Persuaded: The Story of Nicodemus is a fictitious depiction of Nicodemus’ life based on historical facts. Using events and timetables from the Passion Translation of the Bible, Harder created a realistic story that brought biblical characters to life in a way that was historically and scripturally accurate. Harder’s goal was to keep his book historically and scripturally accurate while also making it entertaining.
In particular, the descriptive term ” born again “, which is used to describe salvation or baptism by certain organizations, and John 3:16, which is frequently referenced to characterize God’s plan of salvation, may be traced back to Jesus’ conversation with him. He was a figure of rebirth for African-Americans after the Civil War, writes Daniel Burke, as they strove to shed their former status as slaves. Rosamond Rodman claims that liberated slaves who relocated to Nicodemus, Kansas, following the Civil War gave their town the name “Nicodemus” in honor of the former slave owner.
evoked the biblical figure of Nicodemus as a metaphor for the need for the United States to be “reborn” in order to successfully confront social and economic inequalities.
- Nicodemus as depicted in art
- Jesus and Nicodemus by Crijn Hendricksz, 1616–1645
- Cima da Conegliano, Nicodemus with Christ’s body, Apostle John on the right and Mary to the left
- Tanner – Nicodemus coming to Christ II
- Cima da Conegliano, Nico
- See, for example, David Flusser’s Jesus (Jerusalem: Magnes, 2001), 148
- Idem’s ” Gamaliel and Nicodemus “, JerusalemPerspective.com
- Zeev Safrai’s “Nakdimon b. Guryon: A Galilean Aristocrat in Jerusalem” in The Beginnings of Christianity (ed. Jack Pastor and Menachem Mor
- Jerusalem: Yad Ben-Zvi (1991). The Gospel of John is a collection of stories about a man named John who lived in the first century AD. InterVarsity Press, Leicester, p. 186
- Richard Bauckham, “Nicodemus and the Gurion Family,” Journal of Theological Studies, vol. 47.1 (1996), pp. 1–37
- Nicodemus is a work by James F. Driscoll. The Catholic Encyclopedia.Vol. 11.New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1911. 13 December 2014
- AbcBurke, Daniel.Nicodemus, The Mystery Man of Holy Week, Religious News Service, 27 March 2013
- A 144–45, 472–73
- “Henry Clay Work Biography”.notablebiographies.com
- Overell 2004, pp. 117–18
- Livingstone 2000
- “Nicodemus National Historic Site”, National Park Service
- Martin Luther King Jr., Martin Luther King Jr., Martin Luther King Jr., Martin Luther King Jr., Martin Luther King Jr., Martin Luther King Jr., Martin Luther King Jr., Martin Luther King Jr., Martin Luther King Jr., Martin Luther King Jr (16 August 1967). Speaking at the Eleventh Annual SCLC Convention, “Where Do We Go From Here?” was the topic of the address. University of Stanford’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute (MLK Jr. R&E Institute). It was retrieved on the 30th of November, 2018.
- Cornel Heinsdorff: Christus, Nikodemus, and the Samaritanerin in the city of Juvencus. Cornel Heinsdorff: With an Annotation on the Lateinische Evangelienvorlage (= Untersuchungen zur antiken Literatur und Geschichte, Bd.67), Berlin/New York 2003
- With an Annotation on the Lateinische Evangelienvorlage (= Untersuchungen zur antiken Literatur und Geschichte, Bd.67), Berlin/New York 2003
|Wikimedia Commons has media related toNicodemus.|
- Nicodemus is mentioned in the Jewish Encyclopedia and Butler’s Lives of the Saints as “St. Nicodemus.”
Who was Nicodemus in the Bible?
Answer The only place in the Bible where we can find out anything about Nicodemus is in the Gospel of John. His status as a Pharisee is stated in John 3:1. The Phariseeswere a group of Jews who were zealous in their adherence to the word of the Law and who frequently stood in the way of Jesus throughout His mission. They were frequently chastised by Jesus for their strict adherence to the law (see Matthew 23). In addition to being a Pharisee, Saul of Tarsus (who later became the apostle Paul) was also a Christian (Philippians 3:5).
- John 7:50–51 states that Nicodemus was a member of the Sanhedrin, which was the ruling body of the Jews at the time of Jesus’ death.
- In the time of Christ, the Jewish people were granted a degree of self-rule under Roman control, and the Sanhedrin in Jerusalem served as the final court of appeals for matters pertaining to Jewish law and religion.
- It indicates that Nicodemus was a member of the Great Sanhedrin in Jerusalem at the time of his death.
- Many have believed that Nicodemus was terrified or embarrassed to approach Jesus in the open air, so he chose to pay him a visit at night instead.
- There are a variety of additional possibilities as well.
- The investigation of any teachers or other public personalities who could be leading the Jewish people astray would have been his obligation as a member of their ruling council.
- When Nicodemus expresses skepticism, Jesus reprimands him (possibly gently), reminding him that, as a leader of the Jews, he should already be aware of the situation (John 3:10).
We meet Nicodemus again in the Bible, this time in his formal role as a member of the Sanhedrin, who is debating what to do about Jesus at the moment of his death.
However, Nicodemus argues that Jesus should not be discarded or condemned until the Pharisees in power have heard from Him personally: “Does our law condemn a man without first giving him a hearing and understanding what he does?” Nicodemus argues.
The last time Nicodemus is mentioned in the Bible is in John 19, shortly after Jesus’ crucifixion.
Joseph is characterized as a wealthy individual in the Gospel of John, and as a member of the Council in Mark 15:43.
Joseph went to Pilate and requested for the corpse of Jesus.
The huge quantity of funeral spices would appear to imply that Nicodemus was a wealthy individual who held a high regard for Jesus and his teachings.
Was he a devout follower of Christ?
On these topics, the Bible is deafeningly quiet, and there are no reputable extra-biblical references that can provide solutions.
We might speculate that Nicodemus’ final documented act was his public statement of faith, however we are not told how public this declaration of faith was. His portrayal in the Gospel of John is mainly positive, which shows that his religious beliefs were genuine in the first place.
Who was Nicodemus in the Bible?
Answer The Gospel of John contains the only information we have about Nicodemus in the Bible. When it comes to Pharisees, John 3:1 refers to him as such. As a group of Jews who were extremely conscientious about following the word of the Law, the Pharisees were a constant source of opposition to Jesus during His mission. They were frequently chastised by Jesus for their strict adherence to the Law of Moses (see Matthew 23). In addition to being a Pharisee, Saul of Tarsus (who went on to become the apostle Paul) was a Jew (Philippians 3:5).
- Nicodemus was a member of the Sanhedrin, which was the ruling body of the Jews, according to John 7:50–51.
- The Roman Senate was the group that eventually sentenced Jesus, but they needed the approval of Pilate to carry out their sentence because the death penalty was beyond of their jurisdiction under Roman law.
- Nicodemus came to Jesus in the middle of the night, according to John.
- The time of the visit might very easily be coincidental, but the text does not provide any explanation.
- Nicodemus confronted Jesus with a series of probing questions.
- Jesus confronts Nicodemus with the reality that he “must be born again” shortly as their talk begins (John 3:3).
- Later on, Jesus goes on to explain the new birth in greater detail.
- We meet Nicodemus again in the Bible, this time in his official role as a member of the Sanhedrin, who is debating what to do about Jesus at the moment of his arrest.
The guards are reprimanded by the Pharisees in power, but Nicodemus expresses the view that Jesus should not be dismissed or condemned until they have heard from Him personally: “Does our law condemn a man without first giving him a hearing and understanding what he does?” The Bible states in John 7:51 that Although Nicodemus’ idea is politely dismissed, the rest of the Council appears to have already made up their minds about Jesus and dismisses it out of hand.
- Following the crucifixion of Jesus, Nicodemus is mentioned for the last time in the Bible, in John 19.
- When Joseph is portrayed as a wealthy man by John, he is referred to be a member of the Council by Mark 15:43, respectively.
- The corpse of Jesus was requested by Joseph from Pilate.
- According to the amount of burial spices found, Nicodemus was a wealthy individual who held a high regard for Jesus and his teachings.
- Were his religious convictions sincere and genuine?
- On these topics, the Bible is deafeningly quiet, and there are no trustworthy extra-biblical references that can provide solutions.
We might speculate that Nicodemus’ final documented act was his public statement of faith, albeit we are not told how public this proclamation was at the time. His portrayal in the Gospel of John is mainly positive, which shows that his religious beliefs were genuine in the first instance.
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- Answer Nicodemus is only mentioned once in the Bible, in the Book of John. He is referred to as a Pharisee in John 3:1. The Phariseeswere a group of Jews who were zealous in their adherence to the word of the Law and were frequently in opposition to Jesus during His career. Jesus frequently chastised them for their adherence to the law (see Matthew 23). In addition to being a Pharisee, Saul of Tarsus (who later became the apostle Paul) was a Christian (Philippians 3:5). Nicodemus is also described as a leader of the Jews in John 3:1. Nicodemus, according to John 7:50–51, was a member of the Sanhedrin, which was the ruling body of the Jews at the time. Each city was permitted to maintain a Sanhedrin, which served as the “lower courts.” During the time of Christ, the Jewish people were granted a degree of self-rule under Roman power, and the Sanhedrin in Jerusalem served as the final court of appeals for matters involving Jewish law and religion. This was the body that finally sentenced Jesus, but they had to obtain Pilate to ratify their judgment because the death penalty was outside their jurisdiction under Roman law. Nicodemus appears to have been a member of the Great Sanhedrin in Jerusalem at the time of his death. Nicodemus, according to the gospel of John, came to Jesus in the middle of the night to talk with him. Many have believed that Nicodemus was terrified or embarrassed to approach Jesus in the open air, therefore he chose to pay him a visit at night. This might very well be the case, however the text does not provide any information as to why the visit was scheduled at that time. There are a variety of additional factors that may apply. Nicodemus had a question for Jesus. His role as a member of the Jewish governing council was to look into any instructors or other public figures who could be leading the people astray. Jesus confronts Nicodemus with the reality that he “must be born again” immediately during their chat (John 3:3). When Nicodemus expresses skepticism, Jesus reprimands him (possibly gently), reminding him that, as the leader of the Jews, he should already be aware of this (John 3:10). In the following chapter, Jesus goes on to explain the new birth in greater detail, and it is in this context that we read John 3:16, which is one of the most well-known and cherished phrases in the Bible. We meet Nicodemus again in the Bible, this time in his formal role as a member of the Sanhedrin, who is debating what to do about Jesus. In John 7, certain Pharisees and priests (apparently with authorization to do so) dispatched part of the temple guard to arrest Jesus, but they were unable to bring themselves to carry out their orders (see John 7:32–47). However, Nicodemus argues that Jesus should not be discarded or condemned until the Pharisees in power have heard from Him personally: “Does our law judge a man without first giving him a hearing and understanding what he does?” (See John 7:51.) The remainder of the Council, on the other hand, dismisses Nicodemus’ idea out of hand, as though they had already made up their minds about Jesus. The last time Nicodemus is mentioned in the Bible is in John 19, following Jesus’ crucifixion. Nicodemus is shown aiding Joseph of Arimathea in the burial of Jesus. Joseph is portrayed as a wealthy man in the Gospel of John, and as a member of the Council in Mark 15:43. He is also characterized as a follower of Jesus in John 19:38, albeit a covert disciple since he was scared of the Jews. Joseph approached Pilate and requested the corpse of Jesus. Bringing 75 pounds of spices for use in preparing the body for burial, Nicodemus worked alongside Joseph to wrap the body and place it in the tomb. The huge quantity of funeral spices would appear to show that Nicodemus was a wealthy individual who held a high regard for Jesus. Many questions regarding Nicodemus remain unresolved because of the restricted scope of John’s Gospel. Was he a sincere believer in the Bible? What exactly did he accomplish following the resurrection of Jesus Christ? The Bible is deafeningly quiet on these issues, and there are no trustworthy extra-biblical resources that can provide solutions. It appears that Nicodemus was comparable to Joseph of Arimathea in that he, too, may have been a disciple of Jesus but had not yet collected the confidence to publicly profess his beliefs. We might speculate that Nicodemus’ final documented act was his public proclamation of faith, albeit we are not told how public this declaration was. His portrayal in the Gospel of John is mostly positive, which shows that his religious beliefs were genuine.
A nickname for Nicodemus, o (Nikodemos), is made up of two parts: the first element, “nike,” which indicates triumph, and the second component, “demos,” which means “people” or “ordinary people.” So his given name might indicate “victory of the people” or “victorious among the people.”
Nicodemus in the Gospel of John
The tale of Nicodemus exists exclusively in the Gospel of John’s first three chapters, and it is not mentioned anywhere else in the Bible.
- It is only in the Gospel of John that we get the account of Nicodemus, which takes place over the course of three chapters.
Every time Nicodemus is referenced in the Bible, he speaks and acts with more confidence on behalf of Christ. In John 3, he just pays a secret visit to Jesus in order to get information, however in John 7, Nicodemus intervenes on Jesus’ behalf. Nicodemus, on the other hand, is no longer frightened by the Pharisees and instead takes direct action to assist in the removal of Jesus from the crucifixion in John 19. Here is a description of Nicodemus’ activities and his response to Jesus in detail.
1) Nicodemus meets Jesus secretly
Nicodemus first appears in the Bible in John chapter 3, when he expresses a desire to learn more about Jesus and His teachings. Nicodemus is a Greek philosopher who lived in the first century BCE. “Rabbi, we are aware that you are a teacher who has come from God,” Nicodemus says as an introduction to Jesus. Because no one could achieve the miracles you are performing if God were not present” (John 3:2). Jesus dismisses Nicodemus’ complement and instantly redirects the conversation away from Himself and toward Nicodemus’ spiritual state.
Nicodemus begins to doubt the validity of his being born again and returning to his mother’s womb for a second time at this point in the story.
When Nicodemus is asked about this conversion, he responds, “How can these things be” once again (John 3:9).
Then Jesus goes on to explain, “How can I teach you about heavenly or spiritual things if you don’t even understand the earthly things about which I am speaking?” (Matthew 13:34) Jesus shifts the conversation once again to Moses and Old Testament history, which Nicodemus would have been familiar with from his childhood upbringing.
(See, for example, John 3:14-15.) As a result, John 3:16 is one of the most famous lines in the Bible: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only born Son, that whomever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” Jesus is demonstrating to Nicodemus that the kingdom of God is not founded on political power and strength, but rather on the selfless, sacrificial love of God, which ends in the salvation of man and the gift of everlasting life to those who believe.
Jesus also informs Nicodemus that God did not send Jesus to condemn and judge the world, but rather to redeem the world from sin.
The truth, on the other hand, is revealed in order that his works may be plainly recognized, and that they have been done in the name of God” (John 3:19, 21).
2) Nicodemus’ defense of Jesus
The second time that John mentions Nicodemus is when the Jewish authorities are attempting to kidnap Jesus from his disciples. Nicodemus, on the other hand, puts a stop to their deeds by interrogating their motivations, stating, “Our Law does not judge a man until it first hears from him and understands what he is doing, does it?” (See also John 7:51.) The Pharisees reply by launching a personal assault on Nicodemus, stating, “You are not also from Galilee, are you? ” “Look around, and you will see that no prophet comes out of Galilee” (John 7:52).
Things change, however, when Nicodemus reappears, and he declares himself to be on the side of Jesus the Messiah, which is a significant development.
3) Nicodemus’ at the cross
Finally, following Jesus’ death, Nicodemus takes the daring and public step of removing Jesus’ corpse from the crucifixion and assisting in the burial of Jesus in Joseph of Arimathea’s tomb. Nicodemus also personally donates around 100 pounds of expensive spices for Jesus’ burial, which he himself purchases. Nicodemus is no longer acting in the shadows of society. He is a staunch supporter of Jesus and His mission. He has progressed from being a nighttime quiet seeker to becoming a vocal defender, and eventually to being a courageous follower who takes physical action to worship Jesus as his Lord and Master.
When you think of Nicodemus’s narrative, where do you picture yourself? Are you a lone truth seeker who prefers to operate under the cover of darkness? Are you someone who is interested in learning more about Jesus and His teachings? Are you interested in learning more about salvation, heaven, and the process of being born again? Do you consider yourself to be a spiritual leader in your area of influence, yet you just talk vocally and sometimes hesitantly about spiritual matters? If you’re the latter, are you someone who takes bold and tangible action to protect the reputation and purpose of Jesus Christ?
Nicodemus, the mystery man of Holy Week
He came to Jesus in the middle of the night, slipping away to see the guy who was doing the miracles. He was a powerful Pharisee and a member of the Sanhedrin, the Jewish ruling council, which he served for many years. He wasn’t meant to hang around with the ragtag group of people who followed Jesus. Nicodemus, on the other hand, needed to know: Was the charming Galilean for real? The following are some of Jesus’ most renowned teachings, as recorded in the Gospel of John: Nobody can glimpse the kingdom of God until they have been “born again,” as he explained to Nicodemus in his sermon.
- Those lines are still often used today — just look at the swarms of John 3:16 placards that can be found at sporting events — but the man to whom they are addressed, Nicodemus, remains a bit of a mystery.
- Nicodemus is revered as a saint in both the Eastern Orthodox and Catholic faiths.
- Others Christians, on the other hand, describe him as a coward who has kept his religion hidden.
- In the Gospel of John, he is only referenced a total of three times.
- Later, Nicodemus informs the Pharisees that, according to Jewish law, Jesus should be given an opportunity to be heard before he is executed.
- The History channel’s “The Bible” miniseries, which concludes on Easter Sunday (March 31), gives Nicodemus a more prominent role, portraying him as Jesus’ most formidable adversary among the Jerusalem Pharisees.
Until the arrival of Nicodemus, the majority of Jesus’ disciples had been “ordinary people,” according to Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI in his book “Jesus of Nazareth: Holy Week.” The former pope says that Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea were “two highly recognized representatives of Israel’s educated class who had not yet ventured to confess their discipleship” to Jesus.
In the words of Buchanan, “I felt it would be interesting to examine a possible route for this individual.” “What was it that drew him to Jesus that night to ask honest questions?” says the narrator.
Nicodemus feels compelled to seek out Jesus, who was gaining popularity for his miraculous healings at the time.
‘Because of his education, the way he thinks, and the way he seeks a clear-cut response from Jesus,’ Buchanan said, “he’s a figure that modern Christians can identify to.” Nicodemus was perplexed by Jesus’ mysterious statement, which said that individuals must be “born again.” This remark continues to perplex Christians today.
- Despite the fact that Nicodemus is not on the minds of many current evangelicals, they are extremely concerned with his discussion with Jesus in the Gospel of John, according to Timothy Larsen, a professor of Christian philosophy at Wheaton College in Illinois.
- “Evangelicals have historically given a great deal of thought to when this happened,” Larsen said of the experience of being born again.
- Scholar Rosamond Rodman contends that the freed slaves who migrated to Nicodemus, Kansas, after the Civil War wanted rebirth as well, a goal that predates the arrival of Colson.
- Rodman, on the other hand, contends that the town’s founders had good grounds to commemorate the biblical character.
According to Rodman, “Nicodemus comes to Jesus in the same way that African-Americans came to the Bible: at night and in secret, rightly fearful of the repercussions.” According to Benedict and other Christians, however, the tale of Nicodemus does not conclude in darkness, but rather in light.
In his letter, Benedict says, “The amount of the balm is remarkable and well exceeds any typical proportions.” “This is a funeral fit for a king.” Copyright: If you have any questions about copyright, you should contact the item’s distributor, Religion News Service LLC.
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Meet Nicodemus: A Pharisee Who Placed Jesus’ Body in the Tomb
After seeing the miracles, he sneaked away to visit the guy who performed them. Pharisee of great stature, he was a member of the Sanhedrin, which served as the religious leadership of the Jews. He wasn’t meant to hang around with the ragtag group of people that followed Jesus throughout the world. Nicander, on the other hand, was curious: Was the charming Galilean legit? The following are some of Jesus’ most well-known teachings from the Gospel of John: According to Jesus, no one may enter the kingdom of God until they have been “born again.” As an expression of his love for humanity, God sacrificed His one and only son to preserve it.
- He served as a paradigm of rebirth for African-Americans after the Civil War as they strove to shed their former identities as slaves.
- Nicodemus is venerated as a saint in both the Eastern Orthodox and Catholic faiths.
- Others Christians, on the other hand, denounce him as a coward who disguised his Christian religion.
- In the Gospel of John, he is only alluded to three times.
- A little later, Nicodemus tells the Pharisees that Jesus should be given a hearing before being sentenced under Jewish law.
- The History channel’s “The Bible” miniseries, which concludes on Easter Sunday (March 31), gives Nicodemus a more prominent role, portraying him as Jesus’ primary adversary among the Jerusalem Pharisees, according to the series’ producers.
As Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI points out in his book “Jesus of Nazareth: Holy Week,” before Nicodemus, most of Jesus’ disciples were “common people.” In the words of the previous pope, Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea were “two highly recognized representatives of Israel’s educated class who had not yet ventured to confess their discipleship.” In envisioning Nicodemus’ journey from the Jewish ruling council to skeptic and finally at the foot of the cross, writer Delight Buchanan discovered spiritual and intellectual joy.
- According to Buchanan, “I felt it would be interesting to look at a possible future for this individual” “What drew him to Jesus that night to confront him with his questions?” says the author.
- Nicodemus is compelled to seek out Jesus, who was gaining popularity for his miraculous healings at the time of his encounter with her sickness.
- ‘He’s a figure that modern Christians can identify to because of his education, and because of the way he thinks, and because of the way he seeks a clear-cut response from Jesus,’ Buchanan said.
- The word “Jesus utilized” is extremely profound, yet it is also quite difficult to comprehend, according to Buchannan’s interpretation.
- The majority of Christians believe that being “born again” is necessary for salvation and is a distinguishing feature of their faith in general.
- In his book, “Born Again,” Chuck Colson describes his transformation from Nixon’s hatchet man to evangelical prominence.
- Many historians believe that the town, which was created by African-American clergy, was named after a former slave called Nicodemus, who was freed in the Civil War.
- Slave masters sometimes prohibited blacks from reading the Bible out of fear that they would raise questions about the biblical legitimacy of the institution of slavery.
- The apostles have fled, and on Good Friday, it is Nicodemus who travels up Golgotha with Joseph of Arimathea to the tomb of Jesus, in full face of the Jewish and Roman authorities, carrying balsam to bury Jesus with Joseph.
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- Nicodemus was a major Pharisee and a well-recognized religious leader of the Jewish people, and he was known for the following: Furthermore, he was a member of the Sanhedrin, which was ancient Israel’s ultimate court. References to the Bible: John 3:1-21, John 7:50-52, and John 19:38-42 are the three episodes in the Bible that tell the tale of Nicodemus and his friendship with Jesus, respectively. Pharisee and member of the Sanhedrin is what he is known for. Nicodemus possessed a sage and inquisitive intellect, which served him well. He was dissatisfied with the Pharisees’ strict adherence to the law. His intense desire for truth, along with the bravery to seek out the truth at its source, made him a hero. As soon as Nicodemus realized he was dealing with the Messiah, he was prepared to defy the Sanhedrin and the Pharisees and bury Jesus with honor. Weaknesses: At first, Nicodemus was deterred from pursuing Jesus in the open because he was afraid of what others might say.
What Does the Bible Tell Us About Nicodemus?
Nicodemus has his first appearance in the Bible in John 3, when he goes in search of Jesus at night. That nightfall, Nicodemus learnt from Jesus that he would have to be reborn, which he duly did. The Chief Priests and Pharisees then sought to have Jesus imprisoned for fraud roughly six months before the Crucifixion. Nicodemus raised his voice in protest, imploring the congregation to give Jesus a fair hearing. Nicodemus is the final person to appear in the Bible after Jesus’ death. Nicodemus, in collaboration with his friend and fellow Sanhedrin member, Joseph of Arimathea, carefully cared for the corpse of the crucified Savior, entrusting the body’s remains to Joseph’s tomb after the crucifixion.
Jesus and Nicodemus
Nicodemus is identified by Jesus as a famous Pharisee who also serves as a leader of the Jewish people. He was also a member of the Sanhedrin, Israel’s supreme court, where he served until his death. Nicodemus, whose name literally translates as “bloodless,” stood up for Jesus when the Pharisees plotted to kill him: Nicademus, who had gone to Jesus earlier and who was one of their own, inquired, “Does our law condemn a guy without first hearing him to find out what he has been doing?” Nicodemus was a member of their own group.
- When he first learned of Jesus’ ministry, he became upset and perplexed by the words the Lord was preaching to the people.
- As a result, he mustered tremendous bravery to seek out Jesus and to ask questions of him.
- Nicodemus assisted Joseph of Arimathea in removing Jesus’ body from the crucifixion and burying it in a tomb, putting his own safety and reputation at stake in the process.
- These efforts called into question the legalism and hypocrisy of the Sanhedrin and Pharisees.
- This amount of spice was sufficient to properly bury royalty, demonstrating to Nicodemus that Jesus was indeed the King of the Jewish people.
Life Lessons From Nicodemus
Nicodemus was not going to rest until he discovered the truth. He wished desperately to comprehend, and he had a sneaking suspicion that Jesus had the solution. Nicodemus went to Jesus’ house at night so that no one would see him when he first arrived. He was concerned about what may happen if he talked to Jesus in broad daylight, when people would overhear him and denounce him to the authorities. When Nicodemus came across Jesus, the Lord realized the urgency of his situation. Nicodemus, a bereaved and befuddled guy, was catered to by Jesus, the Living Word, with much compassion and respect, as did the entire congregation.
Following his conversion to Christianity, Nicodemus’ life was irrevocably altered.
Jesus is the fount of all truth and the source of all purpose in life.
Whenever we are reborn, like Nicodemus was, we must never lose sight of the fact that we have received forgiveness for our sins and eternal life as a result of Jesus’ sacrifice for us. Nicodemus is a role model for all Christians, serving as a symbol of faith and courage.
Key Bible Verses
- “Very honestly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they have been born again,” Jesus said. (John 3:3, New International Version)
- “How is it possible for someone to be born when they are old?” Nicodemus inquired. “Surely they are unable to enter their mother’s womb for a second time in order to birth!” (John 3:4, New International Version)
- In fact, God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that whomever believes in him would not perish but will have eternal life (John 3:16). In fact, God did not bring his Son into the world in order to condemn the world, but rather in order to rescue it through him. (John 3:16-17, New International Version)
Nicodemus in The Chosen (Adapting Biblical Characters)
Just so you know, I get a commission from qualifying purchases made via some of the links on this page as an Amazon Associate. This has no impact on the materials that I am highlighting for you today. It simply means that when you make purchases using the links provided below, you will pay the same amount you would have paid if you had located the things yourself, but I will earn a little cash fee as a thank you for assisting you in your search. One aspect of The Chosen that separates it from previous television or film versions of the Gospel is the manner in which we are introduced to Jesus.
Nicodemus may appear to be an odd choice for a key point of view character in a drama about the life of Jesus at first glance. Because he only appears in one Gospel (John), and he appears only on a few occasions: the well-known “Born Again” conversation (John 3:1-21), a brief argument Nicodemus has with others in the Sanhedrin about whether Jesus should be given a full hearing (John 7:45-52) and at Jesus’ burial, where he brings an excessive amount of spices ( John 19:38-42 ). The amount of information we have about Nicodemus based on these three episodes is rather minimal, which may actually suit the goal of adaption well because it provides lots of blank space for The Chosen to fill in.
However, it is unlikely that the lack of information and the opportunity for creative freedom are the sole reasons for The Chosen’s fascination with the figure of Nicodemus.
As an example, The Chosen displays little interest in delving into the relationship between Jesus and John the Baptist, despite the fact that the biblical story raises many questions regarding how well the messianic cousins knew each other and how well they knew each other.
The Primacy of Personal Encounters
If you’re watching a program about the life of Jesus, Nicodemus could seem like an odd pick for a key point of view character. After all, he only appears in one Gospel (John), and he only makes a handful of appearances in that Gospel: the well-known “Born Again” conversation (John 3:1-21), a brief argument Nicodemus has with others in the Sanhedrin about whether Jesus should be given a full hearing (John 7:45-52) and at Jesus’ burial, where he brings an exorbitant amount of spices ( John 19:38-42 ).
Beginning with the very first scene in The Chosen, fear has a tremendous impact on Nicodemus’ personality.
As a matter of fact, there are several other minor persons in the biblical texts who are possibly more important to the tale of Jesus than he is.
So, what does Nicodemus have that John doesn’t have is the question.
The Genuine Seeker
The Heal-Face Turn is a highly common motif in Christian literature, especially in the paranormal genre. The presence of skeptic conversion subplots is common in evangelical films because evangelicals prefer to regard only art that may be used as a vehicle of evangelism. According to theory, the purpose of such side tales is to offer non-Christian viewers with an ideal representation of what it is like to battle with Jesus and accept the faith. Despite evangelicals’ fascination with the Heel-Face Turn, there are actually just a handful tales in the Gospels themselves that fit this pattern, according to scholars.
It’s rare that we see characters in the middle of the story who are attempting to understand and analyze Jesus in the same manner that a modern convert would.
As one of the few “in-betweeners” who appears in the Gospels, Nicodemus is an important character.
When he has his meeting with Jesus, on the other hand, the questions that he asks are not designed to fool or catch Jesus in the same way that the inquiries of his contemporaries are.
More than that, when the other Pharisees demonstrate a reckless disregard for investigating the claims of Jesus, it is Nicodemus who presses them with precisely the kind of point an ideal seeker would make: “Does our law judge a man before first giving him a hearing and learning what he does?” (Matthew 23:37-38) (See also John 7:51.) Finally, in order to bring his tale to a close, the Gospel of John implies that Nicodemus had truly gained fledgling faith, as seen by his readiness to side with the dead Jesus by burying him.
- It is certain that these elements from the Gospel of John make Nicodemus the ideal choice for the position of the Heal-Face skeptic in The Chosen, and that is why he was cast in the role.
- We never get to witness Nicodemus’ reaction to Jesus’ teaching because of a cutaway in the Gospel of John’s depiction of the Born Again dialogue.
- As a result, we’re forced to speculate about whether or not the instructor would accept Jesus’ assertions or dismiss them.
- When Nicodemus argues that the Pharisees should research Jesus before passing judgment on him, it is unclear what he is trying to accomplish.
- In that situation, Nicodemus is attempting to conceal his Christian beliefs while also covertly supporting his master, maybe in the hope of witnessing some of his fellow Pharisees come to believe in Christ.
- In that situation, Nicodemus’ request that people examine into Jesus’ acts and words might be a real expression of his own sincere desire to go deeper into what Jesus is communicating.
- It’s possible that it was impossible for The Chosen to precisely replicate the structure of The Gospel of John.
Even so, there may have been some degree of uncertainty left in the text.
It appears that The Chosen draws Nicodemus’ conversion journey to a close in order to shift the focus of his narrative to the conflict between faith and fear, as seen by the climax of the film.
Nicodemus’ character has a compelling faith vs fear storyline, which I find appealing.
Consider the possibility that, after Jesus complete his teaching on the New Birth, Nicodemus reacts with more questions and uncertainties rather than a strong demonstration of trust.
Come and see what I’m up to, and all of your questions will be addressed.
Another minor criticism of Nicodemus’ conversion tale is that he comes to comprehend far too much about Jesus, far too soon after his conversion.
The protagonists appear to have leapt to the conclusion that Jesus is divine far too early, maybe motivated by a typical evangelical desire for delivering correct theological pronouncements.
Even after a large amount of time has passed in each Gospel, Peter does not make his victorious statement that Jesus is the Messiah.
Allowing its protagonists to accept their trust in Jesus while still having an imperfect or hesitant knowledge of who he truly is would be preferable for The Chosen.
The Fearful Follower
Throughout The Chosen’s first season, the Gospel of John, which appears to be a significant source for most of the story, is particularly concerned with the conflict between fear of man and confidence in Jesus Christ (e.g. John 7:13; 9:22; 12:42; 19:38; 20:19). As we go through the Gospels, we’re regularly presented examples of persons who have the seeds of trust in Jesus, but who do not allow these seeds to come to fullness in the form of a gospel testimony because they are aware that the repercussions might be socially or physically devastating.
When you’re on the sidelines – on the other side of the Jesus movement – watching it take off, and you realize that you might have been a part of it, what does that look like?
when it would not be noticed) and by associating him with Joseph of Arimathea, who is described in the Gospel of John as “a disciple of Jesus who followed him secretly for fear of the Jews,” the Gospel of John appears to associate Nicodemus with this same fear (John 19:38).
From the very beginning of The Chosen, Nicodemus’ character is heavily influenced by his dread of the unknown.
Fear plays a crucial part in the talks that he has with his wife as well as in his own life.
Nicodemus’ back-and-forth dispute with Shmuel is likewise characterized by a great deal of dread on both sides of the table.
Over time, however, as Shmuel and Nicodemus diverge theologically, one of the pupils begins to use his teacher’s anxiety for his own gain, as seen most notably by the veiled threat he issues at the conclusion of season 1.
I thought this to be a very moving and moving scene.
The inability of his character to follow because of his fear of societal rejection sets up an interesting narrative trajectory for his future development in the story.
I’m curious to find out and can’t wait to see what happens in season 2!
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Other articles about adaptability and youth ministry that I have written may be of interest to you as well.
Beyond The Chosen
- Investigating the Biblical World
- Is the Book of the Chosen Reliable? Is it biblical in nature? Season 2 Controversy (Jesus, the Bible, and the Process of Inspiration)
- The Chosen Season 2 Controversy (Jesus, the Bible, and the Process of Inspiration)
- Imagining Mary Magdalene (5 More Bible Adaptations While You Wait for The Chosen Season 2)
- Imagining Mary Magdalene (5 More Bible Adaptations While You Wait for The Chosen Season 2)
- Imagining Mary Magdalene
Adapting Biblical Characters Series
- The Virgin Mary appears in The Chosen ***Season 2***
- Judas appears in The Chosen ***Season 2***
- JamesJohn appears in The Chosen***Season 2***
- Nicodemus appears in The Chosen
- Mary Magdalene appears in The Chosen ***Season 2 Update***
- Matthew appears in The Chosen
- Simon and Andrew appear in The Chosen ***Season 2 Update***
- Jesus appears in The
Exploring The Chosen with Youth
- ‘The Chosen’ Season 2 Reflection P1: What is the story of The Chosen Season 2? ‘The Chosen’ Season 2 Reflection P2: What was the story of The Chosen Season 2? (PlotsTheme)
- Season 1, Episode 1 Guide: The Beloved Disciple
- Season 2, Episode 2 Guide: Philip, Nathanael, and Matthew
- Season 3, Episode 3 Guide: Life Among the Disciples of Jesus
- Season 4, Episode 4 Guide: Simon the Zealotthe Man at the Bethesda Pool
- Season 5, Episode 5 Guide: Mary’s Demons Episode 6 Guide: Mercy, Not Sacrifice
- Episode 7 Guide: Quintus Returns
- Episode 8 Guide: Judas, Matthew, and the Sermon on the Mount
- Episode 9 Guide: Judas, Matthew, and the Sermon on the Mount
- Episode 1 Guide: Mary Magdalene, Lilith, and the Redeemer
- Episode 2 Guide: Mary Magdalene, Nicodemus, and Shabbat
- Episode 3 Guide: Jesus as shown in art, film, and television
- And Episode 4 Guide: Mary Magdalene, Nicodemus, and Shabbat. In this episode, we’ll look at: When Jesus Met Simon (Peter)
- Episode 5: Mary, Mother of Jesus
- Episode 6: Jesus, Shmuel, and the Pharisees
- And Episode 7: The Last Supper. Episode 7 Guide: Did Nicodemus Adopt Jesus as his Savior? The Woman at the Well, Eden, and Zohara are all featured in Episode 8 of the show.
Posts on the Nature of Adaptation
- 17 Influences on Bible Art and Adaptations (Part 1)
- 17 Influences on Bible Art and Adaptations (Part 2)
- 17 Influences on Bible Art and Adaptations (Part 3)
- 17 Influences on Bible Art and Adaptations (Part 4)
Youth Ministry and the Arts
- The importance of drawing in youth ministry, even for those who are not artists
- There are six reasons why the arts are essential for reaching out to Generation Z. Creativity and the arts may be infused into youth ministry in a variety of ways. Resources for Engaging Scripture in a Creative Way
- Bibles for Artists
- Bibles for Writers
- Bibles for Teachers. Using Project-Based Learning, Bible Art, and Generation Z to Transform Youth Ministry
- 7 Ways Project-Based Learning Can Transform Youth Ministry
- Project-Based Learning, Bible Art, and Generation Z: Cultivating Biblical Literacy through Bible Adaptation Projects
- Project-Based Learning, Bible Art, and Generation Z: Cultivating Biblical Literacy through Bible Adaptation Projects