Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews…
Jesus answered and said to him, "Amen, amen, I say to you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above."…
Jesus answered, "Amen, amen, I say to you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit. What is born of flesh is flesh and what is born of spirit is spirit. Do not be amazed that I told you, 'You must be born from above.' The wind blows where it wills, and you can hear the sound it makes, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes; so it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit." (Jn 3:1-8)
The dialogue between Nicodemus and Jesus is one of the in-depth discussions Jesus has in this gospel. This discussion makes the reader to think about the moment of his spiritual birth. Every believer should have had a spiritual birth. It is often forgotten or neglected. One has to review the moment of his spiritual birth.
For a Jew what mattered most was being chid of Abraham. This was the basic thing for a Jew and certainly was so for Nicodemus. But Jesus is bringing in a new idea. He is speaking about a new family. In this family ordinary birth was not sufficient. One needs to be born all over again. One needs to be born ‘from above’.
When we say ‘born form above’ we mean that the initiative is from God. Born of water and spirit might mean a double Baptism (some say so). Baptism in water would mean entering into the kingdom-movement began by John the Baptist and continued by Jesus’ disciples. (Jn 3, 22ff and 4,1-2). Baptism in the spirit which is the new life that comes from within and it is the one which Jesus offers. In the early church both were closely linked.
Baptism that Jesus gives was required for the membership in God’s kingdom. Without this one cannot even see the kingdom of God. God’s kingdom is open to anyone and everyone. It is like the wind (spirit) that blows. No family or tribe or class or caste or organization or system can take control of it. The wind (spirit) moves where it wills.