Spell It Out

Posted by Karah


Think of a time in your life when you knew God was at work, but you didn’t grasp what He was doing at the time. Thank Him for taking care of you.

Review last week’s devotion titled, “Message of Hope.” Examine Jesus’ use of the word sleep over the next few weeks.

“So Jesus then told them plainly, ‘Lazarus has died. I’m glad for you that I wasn’t there so that you may believe. But let’s go to him.’” —John 11:14

Read John 11:11-16 in your Bible. Answer the following:
• Highlight each occurrence of the word “asleep” or “sleep” by Jesus and the disciples. Then write down in your journal what Jesus meant, and compare it to what the disciples thought when he said these words. 
• Circle the phrase “so then Jesus told them plainly” (v. 14). What does that mean? Write the statement in your own words.
• Check out Jesus’ words in verse 15. Why would Jesus be glad he wasn’t there when Lazarus died? How would Jesus’ absence at the time of Lazarus death later help the disciples to believe in Him? Explain.


It’s difficult to understand how God works, but you can know His ways are perfect. Jesus had to spell this out for His disciples when they didn’t understand, and He will do the same for you as you walk with Him.
• Has God ever used a difficult situation in your life to help you believe in Him, trust Him, or understand more about Him? Journal about that experience.
• Thank God for revealing to you what you need to know to trust and believe in Him. Ask Him to continue to strengthen your faith.
• For further study on trusting Jesus even when you don’t understand, read John 14:1 and Isaiah 55:8-9.


Memorize John 11:25-26 this week. Write or recite it from memory three times in a row.


In John 11:7-9 Jesus mentioned returning to Judea and His disciples balked at the idea. John 10:22-30 gives an account of Jesus at the Festival of Dedication, where He claimed to be one with God (v. 30). The religious leaders attempted to stone or arrest Jesus for blasphemy because of His claim (v. 33). Certainly, the disciples were relieved to be away from Judea and the threat of stoning, but Jesus wanted to go back to demonstrate God’s power through raising Lazarus from the dead. He had to tell His disciples plainly in order for them to understand the decision and its significance (John 11:14).


Jesus’ power is displayed for the benefit of all who see.

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