January 9

We began our walk through The List this past Sunday, learning from the words of David found in Psalm 23. This week we continue with another favorite, containing perhaps the most well-known verse in scripture. Our passage for the week, selected by you, is John 3:1-21. What can you say about a passage that is so familiar? The first fifteen verses tell the story of Nicodemus’ clandestine visit to Jesus at night, where Jesus answers his questions - sometimes gently and sometimes sternly. We know this story well.

And then we arrive at John 3:16. We can quote this verse from memory. Athletes, fans behind home plate, or in the end zone, hold this biblical reference up on colorful signs or paint it on their faces before a game. In a way, it has moved out from the church and into our collective culture. As I’ve been pondering on it this week, I saw something I had never noticed before. Reading our scripture passage from a Bible with red letters (signifying words that Jesus spoke), I was startled to notice that John 3:16 is black, not red. And then I did what so many of us do – I googled my question. Who said John 3:16? You won’t be surprised to hear that there are scholars who think these words came from Jesus, and those who hold to the belief that John was the one who said it.

I hope you can join us on Sunday and we explore this question and others from this great chapter of God’s Word.

-Pastor Jane