7 Then after this He said to the disciples: “Let us go again to Judea.”
8 The disciples said to Him: “Rabbi, just now the Jews were seeking to stone You, and You are going back there?”
9 Jesus replied: “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.”
10 but whoever walks in the night stumbles, because the light is not in him.
We can only imagine what it must have been like for the soldiers who were in the trenches during the First World War. It must have been a horrific feeling as they waited for the signal to go over the top of the trenches in an effort to make advances towards the enemy lines. They knew that there was a high possibility of them being killed or injured.
However, on the command to go over the top they obeyed, in spite of the nearness of death.
There were those who led them, those who gave the command. Leaders who knew that they were all going to come face to face with death.
Jesus was and is the supreme leader, and in verse seven He displays His leadership by saying to His disciples: “Let us go again to Judea.”
As we have seen, they had probably been in Bethabara for a few months. They may have been feeling relatively secure from the threats of violence that were coming from prominent Jews. The disciples may have been quite pleased that Jesus had decided not to go to Lazarus, especially since they understood from Jesus that Lazarus was not going to die from his illness.
Therefore, they probably saw no need or urgency to go back to a place that was near to Jerusalem.
However, it appears that Jesus takes them by surprise by saying that they are going to return to Judea.
Are we ready to be taken by surprise by Jesus?
Are we willing to respond to the leadership of Jesus?
We may be feeling quite comfortable where we are in doing the Lord’s work. I know that there have been times in my own life where I have felt settled in the work that God has called us to, but then all of a sudden Jesus has said that it is time to move on; it is time to be unsettled. All of a sudden He has said the equivalent of: “Let us go again to Judea”, and He has led us into something completely different.
Are we ready for this, to be unsettled and vulnerable for Jesus?
The disciples had something of a similar feeling as Jesus said: “Let us go again to Judea.”
They knew the danger they had been in last time they were in Jerusalem.