If Jesus sat down with us for some one-on-one time, what would we ask Him? More importantly, how would we respond to His questions?
Knowing He is omniscient God, the Living Word of God [John 1:1-3] who knows the “thoughts and intents of the heart” [Hebrews 4:12], compels us to answer honestly and fully. No hiding, deflecting, or excusing. Just honest answers.
John’s Gospel records several questions Jesus asked in His earthly ministry. By personally considering each of His questions, we face His same probing truth. By responding truthfully, may we be drawn into a more intimate walk with Him.
11th Question – Are There Not Twelve Hours in the Day?
Jesus heard Lazarus was sick. Being a dear friend of the family, He and His disciples packed up camp and prepared for the journey to Bethany.
That’s when human fear set in. The disciples felt the need to “remind” the sovereign, omniscient Creator that they would be heading into hostile territory. People around those parts previously tried to kill Jesus.
Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours in the day? If anyone walks in the day, he does not stumble, because he sees the light of this world. But if one walks in the night, he stumbles, because the light is not in him.” [John 11:9-10, bold text added]
The question Jesus asked was one of urgency not safety. Yes, the journey might be dangerous but Jesus knew His purpose. He purposefully waited two days—during which time Lazarus died. He purposefully went where He knew His enemies would be—offering yet another chance to acknowledge His deity. He purposefully travelled during the day—allowing all to see and follow. Nothing He does is random or secretive.
The urgency of His question raises seven critical items to consider:
- Brevity of human life. “What is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away” [James 4:14].
- Inevitability of death. “It is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” [Hebrews 9:27].
- Urgency of salvation. “Knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed” [Romans 13:11]. “Now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation” [2 Corinthians 6:2].
- Immediacy of discipleship. “Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes” [Luke 12:40, 43].
- Accountability before God. “So then each of us shall give account of himself to God” [Romans 14:12].
- Imminency of Christ’s return. “He who testifies to these things says, ‘Surely I am coming quickly’” [Revelation 22:20].
- Infinity of eternity. “His servants shall serve Him. And they shall reign forever and ever” [Revelation 22:3, 5]. “Anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire” [Revelation 20:15] that burns forever [Mark 9:42-48].
May Jesus’ question instill a sense of urgency and readiness in the hearts of believers and unbelievers alike.