Marvel not that I said to you, You must be born again.
— While Christ spoke, I imagine the spring night breeze, it might be the first air of dawn, came sighing up the Kedron glen below the city. It sighed among the young fig leaves; it made the olive branches toss and moan; it shook the casement, and the lamp-light flickered. Whence comes it? In what far-off land of the East did it first awake to run before the sunrise? Where will it die away in the West, over the hills, beyond the sea? Whence, oh viewless winds, and whither? Christ lets the emblem speak: what does it say? Like an atmosphere the Spirit of Divine life is everywhere. He envelopes the globes. He touches every man. He penetrates us. Why should not that living Spirit beget us, creating a Divine life within these ribs of carnal death? The manner of His working may be as untraceable as the path of free winds that blow about the mountain tops, and chase each other over the plain; but what of that? His results may be as unmistakable as theirs. The movements of a spiritual power among men, again, vary as the airs of heaven do. Alone in her closet, e.g., a girl is bending over her open Bible; and as she reads, her young face grows solemn, the full eyes gather, till the page is blurred with tears that are not wholly sad; and on her knees she weeps out her godly sorrow for little daily faults which the world would count trifles, till with sweet thankfulness in her purified spirit and all the peace of heaven within her bosom, she rises to go forth to her lowly day of toil and uncomplaining service. This is not the way of the flesh. It was the breath of God that stole into her heart, just as outside the summer air was stirring among the leaves of the garden. But also I have seen a strong man, hardened through thirty years of open reckless sin, kneel in another inner room by night crushed by the agony of an awakened conscience, and gasping forth unwonted confessions in a voice hoarse with suppressed emotion. This, too, is not the way of the flesh. There I saw the same breath of God, but strong this time, and loud as when on wintry Appenines the great north blast makes the pine trees writhe and creak before it tears them from the rock. clefts. Such things are, and they show that there is a Holy Ghost.
(J. Oswald Dykes, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.