John, the writer of this gospel, makes much of darkness and light, “And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil” (John 3:19). All people love. What matters is what you love, for in this you determine who you are. Nicodemus “came to Jesus by night” because he was part of the darkness, “a man of the Pharisees, a ruler of the Jews (John 2:1). Here stood Nicodemus at night, and from the darkness, he approached the light.
Nicodemus began with a mixture of flattery and curiosity, “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). Before he asked his question, Jesus cut him off and answered, “Unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3). Still dark, and Nicodemus said so, “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). Jesus continued, “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). That did not help. Nicodemus still could not see. “As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up” (John 3:14). That made no sense whatsoever to Nicodemus, but he kept listening. Dawn was approaching and he kept listening.
Then Jesus said it, that most famous of all Bible verses, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). And the light began to shine.
We meet Nicodemus again, twice. Once when the Pharisees gathered to condemn Jesus. Nicodemus argued, “Does our law judge a man without first giving him a hearing and learning what he does?” (John 7:51). Like he had done. And finally, at the cross, when “Nicodemus, who earlier had come to Jesus by night, came bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds in weight,” to bury his Savior and King. He did not know yet a resurrected Jesus, but it was daytime now, and Nicodemus walked in the light.
God, there is so much evidence of You. Everywhere I look screams of Your wonder and majesty. How can I doubt? How can I walk away? How can I chase other gods? You are the Creator, the Everlasting God. In You I am done searching. You are my God.
Thank You for turning on the light. I can see again. I now know why I am here and what is ahead for me. I am a citizen of the Kingdom of God. What fear I in this world when I know the King and the King knows me?