Jesus Teaches Nicodemus
31There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a member of the Jewish ruling council. 2He came to Jesus at night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God, for no one can do these miraculous signs you are doing unless God is with him.”
3Jesus replied, “Amen, Amen, I tell you: Unless someone is born from above, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
4Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born, can he?”
5Jesus answered, “Amen, Amen, I tell you: Unless someone is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God! 6Whatever is born of the flesh is flesh. Whatever is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7Do not be surprised when I tell you that you must be born from above. 8The wind blows where it pleases. You hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
9“How can these things be?” asked Nicodemus.
10“You are the teacher of Israel,” Jesus answered, “and you do not know these things? 11Amen, Amen, I tell you: We speak what we know, and we testify about what we have seen. But you people do not accept our testimony. 12If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things? 13No one has ascended into heaven, except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man, who is in heaven. 14“Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15so that everyone who believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
16“For God so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18The one who believes in him is not condemned, but the one who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only-begotten Son of God. 19This is the basis for the judgment: The light has come into the world, yet people loved the darkness rather than the light, because their deeds were evil. 20In fact, everyone who practices wicked things hates the light and does not come toward the light, or else his deeds would be exposed. 21But the one who does what is true comes toward the light, in order that his deeds may be seen as having been done in connection with God.”
Jesus and John the Baptist
22After this, Jesus and his disciples went into the Judean countryside where he spent some time with them and was baptizing.
23John also was baptizing in Aenon near Salim, because there was plenty of water there. People kept coming and were being baptized, 24for John had not been thrown into prison yet.
25Then an argument broke out between John's disciples and a certain Jew about purification. 26His disciples came to John and said to him, “Rabbi, the one who was with you across the Jordan, about whom you testified—look, he is baptizing, and everyone is going to him!”
27John answered, “A man cannot receive a single thing, unless it has been given to him from heaven. 28You yourselves are witnesses that I said, ‘I am not the Christ, but I have been sent ahead of him.’ 29The one who has the bride is the bridegroom. But the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and listens for him, is overjoyed when he hears the bridegroom's voice. So this joy of mine is now complete. 30He must increase, but I must decrease.”
31The one who comes from above is superior to everyone. The one who is from the earth belongs to the earth and speaks in a way that belongs to the earth. The one who comes from heaven is superior to everyone. 32He testifies about what he has seen and heard, yet no one receives his testimony. 33The one who has received his testimony has certified that God is true. 34In fact, the one whom God has sent speaks God's words, for God gives the Spirit without measure. 35The Father loves the Son and has put everything in his hands. 36The one who believes in the Son has eternal life, but the one who rejects the Son will not see life; instead, God's wrath remains on him.