The Water Walker

Matthew 14:22–36 (NKJV, also appearing in Mark 6:45-56; John 6:16-21)

22 Immediately Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He sent the multitudes away. 23 And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there. 24 But the boat was now in the middle of the sea, tossed by the waves, for the wind was contrary.

25 Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea. 26 And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out for fear.

27 But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.”

28 And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.”

29 So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. 30 But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!”

31 And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” 32 And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased.

33 Then those who were in the boat came and worshiped Him, saying, “Truly You are the Son of God.”

Jesus sent His disciples ahead of Him and dismissed the people while He went up on the mountain to pray.  Jesus showed an example of a prayerful life, even though the Son of God.  It is interesting that He sent the disciples away in a boat.  His omniscience would have made it obvious that the wind would be an issue.  It appears that Jesus may have planned for this teachable moment by sending them ahead.  Many times in the Bible, God has shown Himself present in the midst of problematic situations:  The pillar of fire that held off the Egyptians, the fourth man in the fiery furnace, closing the mouth of the lions in the den with Daniel.  Jesus here walks on the water to meet the disciples in the midst of the sea.  Although they thought He was a ghost, He spoke peace to them in the midst of the storm.  Once they recognized Him, blustery Peter asked Him to call Him out of the boat to walk on the water.  Jesus obliged, and Peter walked until He looked around at the conditions.  Then He sank and Jesus saved Him. 

What a picture of our lives walking with Jesus!  We have faith to be saved, but then falter when problems arise and we get our eyes off Jesus and concentrate on the circumstances.  Jesus called Him a man of little faith.  He asked him why he doubted.  Jesus asks us the same today.  Why doubt?  

34 When they had crossed over, they came to the land of Gennesaret. 35 And when the men of that place recognized Him, they sent out into all that surrounding region, brought to Him all who were sick, 36 and begged Him that they might only touch the hem of His garment. And as many as touched it were made perfectly well.

Once they reached the shore, Jesus did what Jesus did: He healed.  His reputation was growing wildly and people came from all over to have Him transform their lives.  Over and over the disciples saw His ministry up close and personal, and yet–at times–they did not believe for themselves.  Remember the great things Jesus has done for you.  Rejoice in the victories brought about by His great power.  Then, reach out for the hem of His garment one more time.  His power still delivers and heals!

Artwork from  http://www.tellthelordthankyou.com/blog/2015/10/22/matthew-1425-33-jesus-asked-why-did-you-doubt-me

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