Background on Nicodemus: Pharisees and the Sanhedrin New types of political and religious leaders arose because of all these changes. By Jesus' day, Pharisees were one of the leading groups. Pharisees were scholars who tried hard to obey the laws in the Old Testament and a dizzying array of man-made laws which they added to the Old Testament. The Jews respected them and gave them great social, religious and political influence. Pharisees usually took great pride in their positions. Nicodemus, (in this passage), is also called a "Ruler of the Jews." That means he was also one of the elite 70 members of the Sanhedrin, the political / religious body that ruled Israel. The Sanhedrin ruled under the supervision of Herod, who reported directly to the Roman emperor. A Roman governor and legion were also stationed in the area.
1. Is there a “light wars” going on in your home? And if so, who wins?
2. Do you have a favorite decoration? If so, why is it so special?
3. How does light affect you? Do you notice when we have a stretch of dark, cloudy days? Do you do anything to combat that?
4. Light is a major theme in the book of John and the bible in general. How many times do you see this word in the first chapter?
5. The first few verses of John create an obvious connection to Genesis creation. Why does John do this? What does this do to our understanding of Jesus as the Word?
6. What does it mean that Jesus’ life is light? And does this connect to Genesis creation?
7. Our world is described as being “darkness” in verse 5. What does this mean? Is this something you’ve observed?
8. What does it mean that the “darkness” was not able to overcome the light? The word “overcome” is also translated as “comprehend”. Both meanings seem to be in view. What kind of hope can that bring you and others?
9. This passage gives us a glimpse into the relationship of the Trinity and the perfection of that relationship. It was out of abundance that the Godhead invites us into relationship, not out of need. How does this bring perspective to the incarnation?
10. In John's day, philosophers said that if you aligned your life with the Logos (the Word), life would go well; you would find meaning, purpose and fulfillment. Then John came along and said that the Logos (the Word) was a person. This revolutionized everything. Has your life been revolutionized by this truth? In what ways?
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