April 19, 2014

John 19:39-42

Nicodemus makes three appearances in the Bible, each in the Gospel of John. He is known as the man who came to Jesus by night in chapter 3. The "Most Precious Verse" in God's Word, John 3:16, comes when Jesus preaches truth to a lost soul comfortable and successful in worldly trappings. Nicodemus surfaces again in John 7:50-52, when, during a meeting with fellow Sanhedrin council members, he raises a procedural point in Jesus' favor. Nevertheless, he was still a Pharisee and not likely converted.

Nicodemus' final appearance (John 19:39-42) reveals that the seed Jesus planted by night blossoms in the light of a gloomy day: Nicodemus forsakes his religion by wrapping and burying the crucified body of his Lord.

Nicodemus does not manifest his devotion to Jesus until after Christ's crucifixion. Along with fellow Pharisee Joseph of Arimathea, Nicodemus retrieves Jesus' body from the cross and prepares it for burial. The wealthy Nicodemus donates the fabulous amount of one hundred Roman pounds of expensive myrrh and aloes to coat Jesus' body properly; it was an amount usually reserved for kings. With Passover only hours away, Nicodemus had forsaken his religion of law because he knew the beaten and pierced figure in his arms was the Son of God. The blood streaked on Nicodemus' robe had covered the sin of the world. In his old way of life, Nicodemus was now unclean. In his new eternal life, he was now unblemished.