Studies In The Book Of John


John 3:9-13


The Text of John 3:9-13


John 3:9 – “Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be?”


A. “How” is a question frequently asked (John 3:4, John 6:52, John 14:5, Luke 1:31-33, etc.).

1. Jesus is God (Matthew 1:23, John 5:16-17, John 20:26-29, Acts 20:28, Romans 9:1-5, and I Timothy 3:16).

2. Since Jesus is God, the answer is that with God all things are possible (Genesis 18:14, Jeremiah 32:27, Matthew 19:23-26, and Luke 1:36-37).

B. These things refer back to spiritual rebirth (John 3:5-8).

1. Understanding spiritual things requires one to think outside his/her fleshly mind (I Corinthians 2:13-15).

2. When one is converted, through the Gospel, that person needs to think in spiritual terms about all things (I Peter 2:5; cf. I Corinthians 6:20).

3. Truth has to work on the inward parts of a man (Psalms 51:6; 10).


John 3:10-11  - (10) Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?  (11) Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness.”


A. Nicodemus was a teacher in Israel, but was ignorant of spiritual matters (I Timothy 1:7).

1. When one takes on the task of being a teacher, much is expected of that individual (Ezekiel 3:17-18, Matthew 5:19, Acts 20:26-27, and James 3:1).

2. The Jews who professed to be teachers were often hypocrites (Romans 2:1-29).

3. The Jews who professed to be teachers often misled the people of Israel because they were unconcerned about the truth (Isaiah 9:16, Isaiah 56:10, Jeremiah 2:8, Jeremiah 8:8-9, Malachi 2:11-13, and Matthew 15:1-14).

B. The “we” in verse eleven had to be Jesus and John the Baptist as they were the only ones teaching at that time (Mark 1:14).

1. We should learn from the example of speaking that which we know (John 7:16, cf. II Timothy 2:2).

2. Testimony occurs when one sees and reports what they have seen (I John 4:14).

3. The testimony of the faithful is often rejected (John 1:11, John 3:32-34, and John 5:43; cf. Isaiah 65:2).


John 3:12-13 - “(12) If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?  (13) And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.”


A. Those who don’t get carnal things certainly will not be able to understand spiritual things (I Corinthians 3:1-3).

1. Nicodemus would not believe things he could see, how could he believe that which he did not see (II Corinthians 5:7).

2. One has to have a willingness to be taught what they cannot see (Job 34:32).

B. No man has been to heaven to be a witness for God (John 1:18).

1. This dispels the “you die and go to heaven” doctrine (cf. Luke 16:19-31).

2. Moreover, as it applies to our context, this shows that no person in the flesh could testify as Jesus could because they’ve not been where He was (Proverbs 30:2-4 and John 8:23-24).




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