Now there was a Pharisee, a man named Nicodemus who was a member of the Jewish ruling council.
He came to Jesus at night and said, "Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with him."
Jesus replied, "Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born again. "4
"How can anyone be born when they are old?" Nicodemus asked. "Surely they cannot enter a second time into their mother's womb to be born!"
Jesus answered, "Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit.6Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit.7You should not be surprised at my saying, 'You must be born again.'8The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit."9
"How can this be?" Nicodemus asked.
10"You are Israel's teacher," said Jesus, "and do you not understand these things?11Very truly I tell you, we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen, but still you people do not accept our testimony.12I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things?13No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven--the Son of Man.14Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up,15that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him."16
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God's one and only Son.
This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.
All those who do evil hate the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed.
But those who live by the truth come into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.
After this, Jesus and his disciples went out into the Judean countryside, where he spent some time with them, and baptized.
Now John also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim, because there was plenty of water, and people were coming and being baptized.
(This was before John was put in prison.)
An argument developed between some of John's disciples and a certain Jew over the matter of ceremonial washing.
They came to John and said to him, "Rabbi, that man who was with you on the other side of the Jordan--the one you testified about--look, he is baptizing, and everyone is going to him."
To this John replied, "A person can receive only what is given from heaven.
You yourselves can testify that I said, 'I am not the Messiah but am sent ahead of him.'
The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom's voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete.
He must become greater; I must become less."
The one who comes from above is above all; the one who is from the earth belongs to the earth, and speaks as one from the earth. The one who comes from heaven is above all.
He testifies to what he has seen and heard, but no one accepts his testimony.
The person who has accepted it has certified that God is truthful.
For the one whom God has sent speaks the words of God, for God gives the Spirit without limit.
The Father loves the Son and has placed everything in his hands.
Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God's wrath remains on them.
Now Jesus learned that the Pharisees had heard that he was gaining and baptizing more disciples than John--
although in fact it was not Jesus who baptized, but his disciples.
So he left Judea and went back once more to Galilee.
Now he had to go through Samaria.
So he came to a town in Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of ground Jacob had given to his son Joseph.
Jacob's well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about noon.
When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, "Will you give me a drink?"8
(His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.)
The Samaritan woman said to him, "You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?" (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans. )
Jesus answered her, "If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water."11
"Sir," the woman said, "you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water?
Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did also his sons and his flocks and herds?"
Jesus answered, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again,14but those who drink the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life."15
The woman said to him, "Sir, give me this water so that I won't get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water."
He told her, "Go, call your husband and come back."17
"I have no husband," she replied. Jesus said to her, "You are right when you say you have no husband.18The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true."19
"Sir," the woman said, "I can see that you are a prophet.
Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem."
21"Woman," Jesus replied, "believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem.22You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews.23Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks.24God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth."25
The woman said, "I know that Messiah" (called Christ) "is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us."
Then Jesus declared, "I, the one speaking to you--I am he."
Just then his disciples returned and were surprised to find him talking with a woman. But no one asked, "What do you want?" or "Why are you talking with her?"
Then, leaving her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the people,
"Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?"
They came out of the town and made their way toward him.
Meanwhile his disciples urged him, "Rabbi, eat something."
But he said to them, "I have food to eat that you know nothing about."33
Then his disciples said to each other, "Could someone have brought him food?"
34"My food," said Jesus, "is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work.35Don't you have a saying, 'It's still four months until harvest'? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest.36Even now those who reap draw their wages, even now they harvest the crop for eternal life, so that the sower and the reaper may be glad together.37Thus the saying 'One sows and another reaps' is true.38I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labor."
Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman's testimony, "He told me everything I ever did."
So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days.
And because of his words many more became believers.
They said to the woman, "We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world."
After the two days he left for Galilee.
(Now Jesus himself had pointed out that prophets have no honor in their own country.)
When he arrived in Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him. They had seen all that he had done in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, for they also had been there.
Once more he visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine. And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum.
When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death.
48"Unless you people see signs and wonders," Jesus told him, "you will never believe."49
The royal official said, "Sir, come down before my child dies."
50"Go," Jesus replied, "your son will live." The man took Jesus at his word and departed.
While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living.
When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, "Yesterday, at one in the afternoon, the fever left him."
Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, "Your son will live." So he and his whole household believed.
This was the second sign Jesus performed after coming from Judea to Galilee.