By Pastor William F. Kumuyi
In fact, if the religious leader, Nicodemus, was perplex and confused about how to obtain the key and ticket that gets us through the gate and into heaven the city of God, it then means that their fo-llowers will be deeply lost beyond redemption; and except he receives that experience here, he will not be able to enter nor lead others into the kingdom of God.
John 3:9-10 “Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be? Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?”
Let us reflect on these two verses above a little bit. Nicodemus was learned, lettered, scholarly, well read and informed; he was vast in historic religion and a leading authority among the Jews in his nation; yet he showed sheer ignorance of the essential truth the gospel message of born again offers. And although he was intelligent in every other thing, but on this single solitary important, essential and indispensable break-through, he was completely at sea. He did not under-stand nor comprehend its’ relevance.
It is mind boggling for a leading authority in religion like Nicodemus to miss the bedrock of his belief sy-stem; and it is worse still for other religious leaders to fall victim of the same error their ancient predecessor suffered, especially haven learnt lessons from it. Un-fortunately, many preachers of today who are success-ors of Nicodemus dumbly learn eternal lessons.
Like Nicodemus, they occupy the seat of religion, and as scholarly people that have acquired theological edu-cation, they can tell us about the history of Christianity and comparative religion world over; but when it comes to the quintessential goal of having a foothold access into heaven, by obtaining the bachelor decree in born again, they become flat-footed, and seem not to decry-pt the simple codified message of God.
It is a pitiable scenario to find a whole lot of people following after these charlatans who deceive for per-sonal gains. In fact, untold millions of people have deci-ded to entrust the destiny of their souls to these ignor-ant religious preachers and leaders like Nicodemus; and the spate of ignorance is not something that was peculiar with Nicodemus. The scriptures is replete with other religious figures who erroneously misinterpret the spiritual significance of the words of Jesus Christ.
John 2:19-21 “Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days? But he spake of the temple of his body.”
When Jesus speaks about something deep, spiritual and essential, they misunderstand the message and translate its’ context to the physical and natural. And since the head is rotten, and in a state of decay, the whole body is bound to suffer the same infection.
John 4:10-11 “Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water. The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water?”
The ignorance about spiritual things being highlighted here is a general phenomenon. It affects the high and the low and moves from the pulpit to the pew. But as you connect to God, you will obtain the very mind of Christ and possess a clearer understanding. Above all, that thing which causes ignorance will be wiped away.
John 6:50-51 “This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”
At this juncture, Christ was referring to the punishment and shame He is going to suffer together with His death at the cross. But they translated the spiritual revelation to the physical, thus: John 6:52 “The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?”
Just as they got the wrong impression of the essential message of Christ; likewise in this present day, when you begin to have a discourse on the infallible word of God, many people who are spiritually shallow will co-mmonize it by turning it’s meaning into the physical.
John 7:33-35 “Then said Jesus unto them, Yet a little while am I with you, and then I go unto him that sent me. Ye shall seek me, and shall not find me: and where I am, thither ye cannot come.
Then said the Jews among themselves, Whither will he go, that we shall not find him? will he go unto the dispersed among the Gentiles, and teach the Gentiles?”
Jesus was talking about His imminent return to heaven, a place prepared for only those who are born again; and since such a place is not meant for unrepentant titular bulldogs, Jesus had to categorically state that they cannot have access to that wonderful place.