In Exodus 4:22, the Israelites as a people are called “my firstborn son” by God using the singular form. In John, the focus shifts to the person of Jesus as representative of that title. The verse is part of the New Testament narrative in the third chapter of John in the discussion at Jerusalem between Jesus and Nicodemus, who is called a “ruler of the Jews”. (v. 1) After speaking of the necessity of a man being born again before he could “see the kingdom of God”, (v. 3) Jesus spoke also of “heavenly things” (v. 11–13) and of salvation (v. 14–17) and the condemnation (v. 18–19) of those that do not believe in Jesus. “14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: 15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. ” (John 3:14–15) Note that verse 15 is nearly identical to the latter part of John 3:16.

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