John 3:3 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

John 3:3, NIV: "Jesus replied, 'Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.'"

John 3:3, ESV: "Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”"

John 3:3, KJV: "Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God."

John 3:3, NASB: "Jesus responded and said to him, 'Truly, truly, I say to you, unless someone is bornagain he cannot see the kingdom of God.'"

John 3:3, NLT: "Jesus replied, 'I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.'"

John 3:3, CSB: "Jesus replied, "Truly I tell you, unless someone is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.""

What does John 3:3 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Jesus explains that a person cannot be redeemed unless they are "born again." The Greek phrase can also mean "born from above." Nicodemus doesn't fully understand this. People frequently misinterpreted Jesus' spiritual teachings in overly physical ways. The question Nicodemus asks in verse 4 about re-entering a mother's womb proves that he knows physical birth is not what Jesus means. He is asking Jesus to further explain the idea.

This concept of rebirth is critical for understanding the gospel. Children inherit the attributes of their parents: to be a "child of God" is no small thing! This also implies the associations of change, and pain, involved in childbirth. The change is mostly on the part of the child, but the pain is mostly on the part of the parent. In this case, the pain suffered by God, in the form of Jesus on a cross, produces rebirth and change in those who turn to Him for salvation.