Encounter The Miracle Of Belief

The disciples said to him, “Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will recover.” Now Jesus had spoken of his death, but they thought that he meant taking rest in sleep. Then Jesus told them plainly, “Lazarus has died, and for your sake I am glad that I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.” — John 11:12-15

So this is interesting on so many levels. But the statement that captures my attention is this — "for your sake, I am glad that I was not there, so that you may believe." Now that is an interesting comment by Jesus.

Here is why.

It means Jesus knew several things, but three critical things. First, that Lazarus was going to die. Second, he was going to raise Lazarus. Third, he was going to use the resurrection of Lazarus to deepen and enrich their belief.

Here's the deal. There is no like Jesus. What Jesus is about to do right here with a group of people he loves is the prelude to his ultimate miracle — the resurrection of his life from the dead. And if you have been studying with me since the beginning of John, you know that the miracles of Jesus have slowly been increasing their effect and impossibility.

  • Water into Wine (John 2:1-11)
  • Healing the Official's Son (John 4:46-54)
  • Healing the Paralytic at the Pool (John 5:1-9)
  • Feeding the 5000 (John 6:1-14)
  • Walking on Water (John 6:16-21)
  • Healing the Man Born Blind (John 9:1-7)

But this phrase, "For your sake, I am glad that I was not there, so that you may believe," clarifies what Jesus knows and understands as he performs these miracles. It's a look at the mind of Jesus behind the miracles. It tells us Jesus understands what's happening on multiple different levels. He sees and understands human tragedy. He sees and understands our confusion and pain. He sees and understands his divine role. He sees and understands divine timing. And He knows how all of these things will impact and solidify our belief in him.

And do you know what that is? It is comforting. But it's only comforting if you have an unwavering faith and deep belief in Jesus. Because on those days, the pain, suffering, and sins are great, all you will see are your present circumstances. Jesus will seem distant, and you will struggle to understand what he's doing. That is, until Jesus shows up. And when he does, it's always at the right moment, the right way, to do the right thing. And when he does, these are the words you'll hear him say, "For your sake, I am glad that I was not there, so that you may believe."

So don't waste time on unbelief. Believe again today. Jesus knows what he's doing.


  1. How does Jesus' statement, "For your sake, I am glad that I was not there, so that you may believe," deepen your understanding of His divine perspective and timing? How does this bring comfort and assurance to your faith journey?
  2. Reflect on the progression of miracles in the Gospel of John, leading up to the resurrection of Lazarus. How do these miracles demonstrate Jesus' increasing impact and impossibility, ultimately building up to the ultimate miracle of His own resurrection? How does this sequence of miracles affirm Jesus' power and authority in your life today?

DO THIS: Believe again today.

PRAY THIS: God, in the middle of my doubts and uncertainties, I ask for the grace to believe again, knowing that You see and understand all things and that Your perfect timing and divine plan are at work in my life. Amen.

PLAY THIS: Come, Jesus, Come.

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Read through the Bible daily with Vince Miller.

4 thoughts on “Encounter The Miracle Of Belief

  1. David Josker says:

    I’m with Chris with the overlap on the first comment. Thought it would go away, but so much for thought. Thank you Vince for all you do for us!

  2. Chris Caliguire says:

    Does an overlap of comment screen, and the first comment happen to everyone or just me? I tried to paste a screenshot to show, but it’s not working. Like, this comment opportunity overlaps the first comment for the past couple weeks and you can’t read half the comment

  3. Chris Caliguire says:

    Yes, what a cool prelude. Probably too early to comment on the Jews 3 day rule about true death. Like Jesus, Lazarus was dead 3 days to prove to everyone he was really dead. At the time, nobody knew this necessity. Sorry if I jumped ahead!! 🤔

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