The Marriage in Cana
READ John 2:1-11
Why did Christ’s mother Mary ask Him to help the wedding party that had run out of wine?
Why does Christ answer Mary “what have I to do with thee? Mine hour is not yet come?”
Why does Christ make use of the waterpots used for ceremonial purification in religious observances?
How did Christ change water into wine; did it actually change its molecular nature or was this a “Jedi mind trick” on Christ’s part?
Nicodemus and Being Born Again
Christ travels from Galilee to Jerusalem for the Passover and cleanses the temple. While He is there He is visited by Nicodemus, a member of the Sanhedrin.
READ John 3:1-2
Who was Nicodemus and what assumptions can we make that could give us insight into why Christ answers him the way He does?
How did Nicodemus know Christ came from God?
READ John 3:3-7
In light of Nicodemus’ acknowledgement that Jesus had descended from the High Council of Heaven with authority, why did Christ tell him that he must be born again – as he would already have been baptized, to be holding the position he was holding in Israel?
Can one be born the second time from the mother’s womb? Why did Christ not answer this question?
What is the difference between being born again to “see” vs being born again to “enter” the kingdom?
Why must we first be “born to see”?
What are we when we have been born again to see?
How do we become “born again to see?”
READ Ezra Taft Benson quote:
“As we seek to qualify to be members of Christ's Church -- members in the sense in which He uses the term, members who have repented and come unto Him -- let us remember these principles. The gospel is the Lord's plan of happiness and repentance is designed to bring us joy. True repentance is based on and flows from faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. There is no other way. True repentance involves a change of heart and not just a change of behavior (see Alma 5:13). Part of this mighty change of heart is to feel godly sorrow for our sins. This is what is meant by a broken heart and a contrite spirit… It is not uncommon to find men and women in the world who feel remorse for the things they do wrong. Sometimes this is because their actions cause them or loved ones great sorrow and misery. Sometimes their sorrow is caused because they are caught and punished for their actions. Such worldly feelings do not constitute "godly sorrow" (2 Corinthians 7:10). Godly sorrow is a gift of the Spirit. It is a deep realization that our actions have offended our Father and our God. It is the sharp and keen awareness that our behavior caused the Savior, He who knew no sin, even the greatest of all, to endure agony and suffering. Our sins caused Him to bleed at every pore. This very real mental and spiritual anguish is what the scriptures refer to as having "a broken heart and a contrite spirit" (D&C 20:37). Such a spirit is the absolute prerequisite for true repentance.” (E.T. Benson; Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p. 71-72)
What does it mean to be “born of water and of the Spirit”?
What is an ordinance?
Is it possible to perform the baptism of water and be confirmed without receiving the baptism of fire or gift of the Holy Ghost?
READ D&C 132:7 (minus the insertion)
“All covenants, contracts, bonds, obligations, oaths, vows, performances, connections, associations, or expectations, that are not made and entered into and sealed by the Holy Spirit of Promise… are of no efficacy, virtue, or force in and after the resurrection from the dead; for all contracts that are not made unto this end have an end when men are dead.”
Is ANYTHING binding unless it is sealed by the Holy Spirit of Promise?
Why did Nicodemus “marvel” at Christ’s answers?
What does it mean to be born of God?
How does one receive the baptism of the Spirit or Fire – to be born of God?
READ Omni 1:26, 3 Nephi 9:19-20, Alma 22:18, and Moroni 4:3
What are the terms of the covenant that we must offer up?
In a new translation of the Testimony of St John (TSJ), the interchange is slightly different.
READ: “Nicodemus said to him, If I believe this, can I ascend in this life, or will it be accomplished only in the afterlife? Jesus answered, In the name of Father Ahman I say to you, except you receive the ordinance of baptism to join the new dispensation, and thereby forsake your sins and receive forgiveness and an outpouring of the Spirit, you will not ascend to God’s presence in this life or the life to come. All who are devoted to the ambitions of the flesh remain imprisoned by the flesh, and those who are born anew through the ordinances, receive the Spirit of Truth, and are able to know the record of heaven by the Spirit of Truth. Do not question if what I say is true because the Spirit of Truth confers light, knowledge, and understanding of the mysteries of heaven within every soul who receives it.”
What insights can you gain from this translation?
What does it mean to remain imprisoned by the flesh?
What is implied by Nicodemus’ questioning if what Christ says is true?
READ John 3:8-15
Why does Christ say the person who has been born of the Spirit is like the wind?
Why did the masters of Israel not know that a new dispensation had begun?
What sign did Moses (who the Pharisees greatly revered) give to Israel regarding the Messiah?
READ John 3:16-21 and John 3:32-36 (JST)
Why did the Father send the Son?
If you were assured the eternal rewards of a god, and knowing what you know about the hell that can be this life, is there anything that would cause you to risk all of that by coming (back) down to an Earth?
Why did God send prophets prior to Christ’s birth to testify of Him?
Living Water to the Samaritan Woman at Jacob’s Well
After this early Judean ministry is completed, Christ leaves Judea for Galilee, by way of apostate Samaria.
READ John 4:5-14
What happens when we run out of water on a hot day?
What can happen if you are out in the hot desert and you aggressively ration your water?
How would you compare the natural water and the “living water” that Christ is talking about?
What similarities and differences exist between drawing the water from Jacob’s Well and obtaining the living water?
READ D&C 63:23
Christ tells the woman that the living water is His to give; how does He give us that water?
READ D&C 84:19-23
What are the mysteries of His kingdom that yield this living water?
READ John 4:15-19
What can we learn from this exchange between Christ and the woman?
READ John 4:20-26
What is Christ teaching her about how, where and what to worship?
READ John 4:27-38
Christ had not eaten; what was the “meat to eat” that the disciples didn’t know about?