Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ 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 3:5–8
It is easily forgotten that these words are the precursors for understanding the most powerful and well known words of Christ: “For God so loved the world…” Why? What is the significance of such a cryptic preamble?
Its significance again finds itself in the hidden: that the truth of God, no matter how plainly stated, can only be truly understood by those rejuvenated and reborn and recast in the spirit. This is why the world, in all of tis carnal and utilitarian and indulgent, hedonistic forms will never understand the glory and devastating attraction of God. It is born of a different nature and into an altogether foreign tongue. Its biology is incompatible, its logic folly, and wisdom foolishness.
This is why redemption demands rebirth and re-creation: to start from a nascent germinal concept — the glory and sovereignty and humility and love of God — and arrive at the most profound of all mysteries:
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. 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. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God. — John 3:16–21