«  |  Home  |  Genealogy  |  Recovery  |  Bible Study  |  Will Power  |  Dictionaries  |  Simple Bible  |
Download/Print (PDF) .

Stumble Not

Question: Please explain these verses => John 11: 8,9 and 10

John 11:7 Then after that saith he to his disciples, Let us go into Judaea again. 8 His disciples say unto him, Master, the Jews of late sought to stone thee; and goest thou thither again? 9 Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world. 10 But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him.

John 11:7-8:

The disciples were nervous about going back to Judea for fear that Jesus may be stoned. And, they had good reason to be fearful. They were also fearful that their own lives may be in danger also. This must be why Thomas said, "Let us also go, that we may die with him."(verse 16)

John 11:9-10:

Jesus said, "Are there not twelve hours in the day?" It is helpful to understand an hour meant to Israel. Jesus was here speaking of the time period beginning at sunrise and ending at sunset. All through the Bible, the word "day" has multiple meanings. Sometimes it is the daylight hours. Other times it is from sunset to the next sunset. No matter what time of the year it was, they divided the time between sunrise and sunset into 12 equal parts and called each of those parts an "hour". So the length of their daylight "hour" was constantly changing. This may seem strange, but they could easily estimate what "hour" of the day it was at any given time just be looking at the position of the sun.

I think there are 3 meanings to the rest of what Jesus said:

1) The obvious, literal meaning: If anyone walks during the daylight hours, he won't stumble because he can see where he is going because of the sunlight. Likewise, if anyone walks in the dark, he will stumble because he can't see where he is going because there is nothing to light his way.

2) The direct answer to the disciple's concern, understanding that Jesus did nothing of Himself: Jesus always did only as His Father directed Him to do. In that way Jesus was walking in the "light" of His Father. Because of this, Jesus knew that nothing would happen to Him without His Father's permission. He knew that He would not "stumble" when doing His Father's will because He always walked in the "light" of His Father.

3) The application to our life today: The same is true for us. Remember that Jesus taught us to pray, "Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done..." If we allow Christ's Father's will to be done in our lives, we will also be walking the "light" of Christ's Father and nothing will happen to us without His permission. We will not "stumble". "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."(Romans 8:28)

Ellen White said it this way:

“The Father’s presence encircled Christ, and nothing befell Him but that which infinite love permitted for the blessing of the world. Here was His source of comfort, and [so] it is for us. He who is imbued (permeated or saturated) with the Spirit of Christ, abides (dwells, rests, continues, stands firm) in Christ. The blow that is aimed at him falls upon the Savior, who surrounds him with His presence (hugged by Jesus). Whatever comes to him comes from Christ. He has no need to resist evil, for Christ is his defense. Nothing can touch him except by our Lord’s permission, and ‘all things’ that are permitted ‘work together for good to them that love God.’ Romans 8:28.”-Ellen White, (Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing p71. (Parenthetical comments added by Sid)

Desiring to live by every word that comes from the mouth of Jehovah (Deut8:3; Matt4:4)

-Sid Nash: 09/30/2023. Latest version: http://sidnash.org/docs/StumbleNot.html