Nicodemus in today’s Gospel believes Our Lord is working signs that show his union with God, but he is far from the bold disciples exulting in the Holy Spirit in today’s First Reading after Peter and John gave witness to Jesus before the Sanhedrin. He comes at night not only to avoid being detected as a disciples, but because he is in the dark about the big picture: he’s not yet received the grace to fully understand Our Lord and his mission. Seeing the big picture is not just something to be worked out with the knowledge and reason at hand: it requires being born into a new life where the Holy Spirit helps you see.
Our Lord today speaks of being born above, and of being born of water and the Spirit. If you want to see the Kingdom of God or enter it, this rebirth is necessary. We believe this happens through the grace that God gives via Baptism. It is not just water, and not just Spirit; both are needed. The sacraments are visible signs of invisible graces, instituted by Christ, and Baptism is the gateway to all others.
The octave of Easter ended yesterday remembering Divine Mercy, but also those just baptized at the Easter Vigil. Let’s pray for all those recently born of water and the Spirit through Baptism.
Readings: Acts 4:23–31; Psalm 2:1–9; John 3:1–8.