What Jesus Did! 'Disciple Time' — John 11:54

Sunday, August 17, 2014

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So Jesus stopped traveling around openly among the Jews. Jesus left {Jerusalem} and went to a place near the desert. Jesus went to the town called Ephraim. Jesus stayed there with his followers.
— John 11:54
Illustration of John 11:54 — So Jesus stopped traveling around openly among the Jews. Jesus left {Jerusalem} and went to a place near the desert. Jesus went to the town called Ephraim. Jesus stayed there with his followers.

Key Thought

In all four Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John), we learn that the last part of Jesus' ministry is specifically focused on teaching and preparing his disciples. Many in the crowd turn away and the determination of his opponents to kill him is growing. Jesus recognizes that he has a short time to prepare his disciples for his "departure" and the responsibilities they will have to minister in his absence. Despite Jesus' example, many of us fail to share our vision and our ministries with others who can carry them on after we are gone and help us take advantage of the opportunities that God is giving us now. Let's learn from Jesus' example the vital importance of sharing our visions, dreams, and ministries with others while we still have time.

Today's Prayer

Father of grace and mercy, thank you for giving me the abilities that I have and the opportunities to use them for your glory and for the work of your Kingdom. Open my eyes, dear Father, to those around me with whom I can share the passion, understanding, and ministry opportunities you have given me. In Jesus' name I ask it. Amen.

Today's Verses in Context

There were many Jews that came to visit Mary. They saw what Jesus did. And many of these Jews believed in Jesus. But some of the Jews went to the Pharisees. They told the Pharisees what Jesus did. Then the leading priests and Pharisees called a meeting of the Jewish council. They said, "What should we do? This man (Jesus) is doing many miracles. If we let him continue doing these things, all the people will believe in him. Then the Romans will come and take away our temple and our nation." One of the men there was Caiaphas. He was the high priest that year. Caiaphas said, "You people know nothing! It is better for one man to die for the people than for the whole nation to be destroyed. But you don't realize this." Caiaphas did not think of this himself. He was high priest that year. So he was really prophesying that Jesus would die for the Jewish people. Yes, Jesus would die for the Jewish people. But Jesus would also die for God's other children that were scattered {in all the world}. He would die to bring them all together and make them one people. That day the Jewish leaders began planning to kill Jesus. So Jesus stopped traveling around openly among the Jews. Jesus left {Jerusalem} and went to a place near the desert. Jesus went to the town called Ephraim. Jesus stayed there with his followers. It was almost time for the Jewish Passover festival. Many people from the country went to Jerusalem before the Passover. They went to do the special things to make themselves pure {for the Passover}. The people looked for Jesus. They stood in the temple area and asked each other, "Is he (Jesus) coming to the festival? What do you think?" But the leading priests and the Pharisees had given a special order about Jesus. They said that if any person knew where Jesus was, the person must tell them. Then the leading priests and the Pharisees could arrest Jesus.

John 11:45-57

Related Scripture Readings

Then Jesus went up on a hill. Jesus told some men to come to him. These were the men Jesus wanted. These men went up to Jesus. Jesus chose twelve men and called them apostles. Jesus wanted these twelve men to be with him, and he wanted to send them to other places to tell people {God's message}. And Jesus wanted these men to have the power to force demons out of people.

Mark 3:13-15

I loved you like the Father loved me. Now continue in my love. I have obeyed my Father's commands, and I continue in his love. In the same way, if you obey my commands, you will continue in my love. I have told you these things so that you can have the true happiness that I have. I want you to be completely happy. This is what I command you: Love each other like I have loved you. The greatest love a person can show is to die for his friends. You are my friends if you do the things I tell you to do. I don't call you servants now. A servant does not know what his master is doing. But now I call you friends because I have told you everything I heard from my Father. You did not choose me; I chose you. And I gave you this work: to go and make fruit. I want this fruit to continue {in your life}. Then the Father will give you anything you ask for in my name. This is my command: Love each other.

John 15:9-17

Brothers and sisters, all of you should try to live like me. And copy those people who live the way we showed you.

Philippians 3:17

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.