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عیسی و نیقودیموس

۱یک نفر از پیروان فرقۀ فریسی به نام نیقودیموس که از بزرگان قوم یهود بود، ۲یک شب نزد عیسی آمد و به او گفت: «ای استاد، ما می دانیم تو معلمی هستی که از طرف خدا آمده ای زیرا هیچکس نمی تواند معجزاتی را که تو می کنی انجام دهد، مگر آنکه خدا با او باشد.» ۳عیسی جواب داد: «بیقین بدان تا شخص از نو تولد نیابد نمی تواند پادشاهی خدا را ببیند.» ۴نیقودیموس گفت: «چطور ممکن است شخص سالخورده ای از نو متولد شود؟ آیا می تواند باز به رَحِم مادر خود برگردد و دوباره تولد یابد؟» ۵عیسی جواب داد «بیقین بدان که هیچ کس نمی تواند داخل پادشاهی خدا شود مگر آنکه از آب و روح تولد یابد. ۶آنچه از جسم تولد بیابد، جسم است و آنچه از روح متولد گردد روح است. ۷تعجب نکن که به تو می گویم همه باید دوباره متولد شوند. ۸باد هرجا که بخواهد می وزد. صدای آن را می شنوی اما نمی دانی از کجا می آید یا به کجا می رود. حالت کسی هم که از روح خدا متولد می شود همینطور است.» ۹نیقودیموس در جواب گفت: «این چطورممکن است؟» ۱۰عیسی گفت: «آیا تو که یک معلم بزرگ اسرائیل هستی، این چیزها را نمی دانی؟ ۱۱بیقین بدان که ما از آنچه می دانیم سخن می گوییم و به آنچه دیده ایم شهادت می دهیم، ولی شما شهادت ما را قبول نمی کنید. ۱۲وقتی دربارۀ امور زمینی سخن می گویم و آن را باور نمی کنید، اگر دربارۀ امور آسمانی سخن بگویم چگونه باور خواهید کرد؟ ۱۳کسی هرگز به آسمان بالا نرفت، مگر آنکس که از آسمان پایین آمد، یعنی پسر انسان که جایش در آسمان است. ۱۴همانطوری که موسی در بیابان مار برنجی را بر بالای چوبی قرار داد، پسر انسان هم باید بلند کرده شود ۱۵تا هر کس به او ایمان بیآورد صاحب زندگی ابدی گردد.

۱۶زیرا خدا به دنیا آنقدر محبت داشت که پسر یگانۀ خود را داد تا هر که به او ایمان بیاورد هلاک نگردد، بلکه صاحب زندگی ابدی شود. ۱۷زیرا خدا پسر خود را به دنیا نفرستاد که از دنیا بازخواست کند بلکه تا آن را نجات بخشد. ۱۸هر کس به او ایمان بیآورد از او بازخواست نمی شود اما کسی که به او ایمان نیاورد زیر حکم باقی می ماند، زیرا به اسم پسر یگانۀ خدا ایمان نیاورده است. ۱۹حکم بازخواست این است که نور به دنیا آمد ولی مردم به علت اعمال شرارت آمیز خود تاریکی را از نور بهتر دانستند، ۲۰زیرا کسی که مرتکب کارهای بد می شود از نور نفرت دارد و از آن دوری می جوید مبادا اعمالش مورد ملالت واقع شود. ۲۱اما شخص نیکوکار به سوی نور می آید تا روشن شود که اعمالش در خداترسی انجام شده است.»

عیسی و یحیی

۲۲بعد از آن عیسی با شاگردان خود به سرزمین یهودیه رفت و در آنجا مدتی با آن ها مانده مردم را تعمید می داد، ۲۳یحیی نیز در عینون، نزدیک سالیم، به تعمید دادن مردم مشغول بود. درآن ناحیه آب فراوان بود و مردم برای گرفتن تعمید می آمدند، ۲۴زیرا یحیی هنوز به زندان نیفتاده بود.

۲۵بین شاگردان یحیی و یک نفر یهودی مباحثه ای در مورد مسئلۀ طهارت پیدا شد. ۲۶پس آن ها نزد یحیی آمده به او گفتند: «ای استاد، آن کسی که در آن طرف اُردن با تو بود که تو دربارۀ او شهادت دادی، در اینجا به تعمید کردن مردم مشغول است و همه پیش او می روند.» ۲۷یحیی در جواب گفت: «انسان نمی تواند چیزی جز آنچه خدا به او می بخشد به دست آورد. ۲۸شما خود شاهد هستید که من گفتم مسیح نیستم، بلکه پیشاپیش او فرستاده شده ام. ۲۹عروس به داماد تعلق دارد. دوست داماد، که در کناری ایستاده و صدای داماد را می شنود، لذت می برد. خوشی من هم همینطور کامل شده است. ۳۰او باید ترقی کند، و من باید از نظر بیفتم.»

کسی که از آسمان می آید

۳۱کسی که از بالا می آید مافوق همه است و کسی که متعلق به این دنیای خاکی باشد آدمی است زمینی و دربارۀ امور دنیوی سخن می گوید. آن کسی که از آسمان می آید از همه بالا تر است ۳۲و به آنچه دیده و شنیده است شهادت می دهد اما هیچ کس شهادت او را قبول نمی کند. ۳۳هرکه شهادت او را بپذیرد صداقت و راستی خدا را تصدیق کرده است. ۳۴کسی که از طرف خدا فرستاده شده است کلام خدا را بیان می کند زیرا خدا روح خود را بی حد و اندازه به او عطا می فرماید. ۳۵پدر به پسر محبت دارد و همه چیز را به او سپرده است. ۳۶آن کسی که به پسر ایمان بیاورد زندگی ابدی دارد اما کسی که از پسر اطاعت نکند زندگی را نخواهد دید، بلکه همیشه مورد غضب خدا می باشد.

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