Seeing “Born of water” as an Exodus Allusion in John 3:5

Seeing “Born of water” as an Exodus Allusion in John 3:5 March 17, 2018

My esteemed colleague, Tim Foster (Vice-Principal, Ridley College) has an interesting article in the latest issue of BBR on John 3:5 where Foster alleges that it contains exodus imagery.

Foster concludes:

The occasion of the meeting and the language of the passage suggest that the discourse ought to be interpreted against the background of the exodus. This raises the possibility that “born of water” refers to Israel’s passage through the Red Sea. Nicodemus is presented as an archetypal Jew, and as such the presumption implied by his statement in v. 2 concerning entry into the kingdom of God is challenged Even as they celebrate the exodus, Jesus indicates in vv. 3, 5, and 6 that in the new age this birth will prove insufficient, and he must be born again by the spirit. The locus of salvation has shifted from belonging to Israel to believing in Jesus.

Timothy D. Foster, “John 3:5: Redefining The People of God,” BBR 27.3 (2017): 351-60.

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