John 3:5

“Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

King James Version (KJV)

Other Translations

Iesus answered, Uerily, verily I say vnto thee, except a man be borne of water and of the spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdome of God.
- King James Version (1611) - View 1611 Bible Scan

Jesus answered, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
- New American Standard Version (1995)

Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except one be born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God!
- American Standard Version (1901)

Jesus said in answer, Truly, I say to you, If a man's birth is not from water and from the Spirit, it is not possible for him to go into the kingdom of God.
- Basic English Bible

Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except any one be born of water and of Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
- Darby Bible

Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say to thee, Except a man be born of water, and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
- Webster's Bible

In most solemn truth I tell you, replied Jesus, "that unless a man is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the Kingdom of God.
- Weymouth Bible

Jesus answered, "Most certainly I tell you, unless one is born of water and spirit, he can't enter into the Kingdom of God!
- World English Bible

Jhesus answeride, Treuli, treuli, Y seie to thee, but a man be borun ayen of watir, and of the Hooli Goost, he may not entre in to the kyngdom of God.
- Wycliffe Bible

Jesus answered, `Verily, verily, I say to thee, If any one may not be born of water, and the Spirit, he is not able to enter into the reign of God;
- Youngs Literal Bible

Bible commentary

Wesley's Notes for John 3:5


3:5 Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit - Except he experience that great inward change by the Spirit, and be baptized (wherever baptism can be had) as the outward sign and means of it.


People's Bible Notes for John 3:5


Joh 3:5 Except a man be born of water and [of] the Spirit, etc. Jesus does not reply directly to the question of Nicodemus, but proceeds to give more explicit statement concerning the new birth. One must be born of water and of the Spirit. Whatever this may mean, it will be admitted by all (1) that no one is a member of the kingdom of God until he is born again; (2) that the Savior declares the impossibility of one entering who is not born of water and of the Spirit. All agree that the birth of the Spirit refers to the inward, or spiritual change that takes place, and all candid authorities agree that "born of water" refers to baptism. So Alford, Wesley, Abbot, Whitby, Olshausen, Tholuck, Prof. Wm. Milligan, the Episcopal Prayer Book, the Westminister Confession, the M. E. Discipline, and M. E. Doctrinal Tracts, and also the writers of the early Church all declare. Alford says: ``All attempts to get rid of this have sprung from doctrinal prejudices.'' Abbott says: ``We are to understand Christ as he expected his auditor to understand him. John the Baptist baptized both Jew and Gentile as a sign of purification by repentance from past sins. Nicodemus would then have certainly understood by the expression, "born of water", a reference to this rite of baptism.''

Discussion for John 3

  • A disciple
    Stand a man; you wrote: "What sins each of us may or may not be guilty of is irrelevant..." That is completely contrary to all that God teaches and commands us, to REPENT of sins and forsake idols! Jesus has broken the chains that held us under bondage to sin, and gives us the light of life and His Spirit to grow in grace and knowledge of Him. Sin is MOST RELEVANT for it will deceive and destroy!
  • Alex
    Dis. All johns disciples had to be rebaptised with the H.G. IN ACTS 17 JESUS DISCIPLES HAD TO SHOW JOHNS DISCIPLES A MORE PERFECT WAY, John himself asked jesus saying I have NEED to be BAPTISED of YOU .John said behold the lamb of God that taketh away the sins of the world. not h20.All of the disciples had been water baptised but jesus tells them if i wash thee not you will have no part with me.
  • A disciple
    Stand a man; if as you say, everyone who doesn't believe in Jesus is evil; what does that make the one who tells the unbeliever or unclean, "Stand by yourself, away from me; for I am holier than thou!" The difference between the one who comes to the light, and those who don't; is that our deeds may be manifest; that we give an honest accounting to God, like Abel; and show God our trust in Christ!
  • A disciple
    Alex; There is no competition between Baptism and the Cross! Neither Jesus nor any of the Apostles ever told anyone that had been Baptized by John, that they were in danger of forfeiting the benefits of His Redemptive Sufferings! If we are not Baptized into Christ, and into the Father, and into the Spirit; then we are none of His; and in no wise in a condition to be Baptized with fire and Spirit!
  • A disciple
    Stand a man; I understand very much your enthusiasm; but you will find as you go on with the Lord, that there are some serious and important inconsistencies in your thinking just now. Jesus said to the disciple; those who forsook all and were following Him, and loved Him; If you then BEING EVIL know how to give good things to your children..." If we say we have no sin we deceive ourselves. HONESTY
  • A disciple
    "That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life." What do we have to do then to "Believe" in Jesus? For many of us when we first get saved, we don't know a thing except that we have to repent of our sins and change our life by following Jesus with all our heart. What if someone's on their death-bed after a lifetime spent running behind other saviours and following other gospels "instead of" Christ and they cry out in torments and horrible fear of death and imminently God's eternal judgment and they cry to Jesus to save them? It's an awful risk to take, to wait till the very end and then in utter desperation hope that there's a God and a Jesus to help! The Lord said that He wouldn't turn anyone away who comes to Him with a good and honest heart and sincere repentance. So we hope for the best but take the precious Promise also as it is a most solemn warning for those who do not take a course in life, but think they can push it to the last minute. God have mercy on us all!