Do you need reassurance that Jesus is willing and able to rescue you from the storms of life? The Bible offers us this kind of hope. Some storms are rougher than others, but God can bring us safely through all of them.
In John 6, Mark 6, and Matthew 14, we learn about Jesus walking to His disciples on the Sea of Galilee during a storm. This story is a great example of how important it is to read all four gospels to get the full picture of events in the Bible and also of the value of study helps.
Until recently, I thought of this story in the context of Peter walking on the water to meet Jesus, but only Matthew mentions that part. Mark and John don’t talk about Peter (and Luke doesn’t include the story at all.) In turn, John and Mark’s accounts have details that aren’t included in Matthew. It was in the book of John that I first learned things that I’d previously missed about the story, then I compared the different accounts to gain more understanding of the event.
Scripture tells us that the disciples are in a boat on the Sea of Galilee. Jesus had stayed behind to pray after feeding the 5,000 and after learning of John the Baptist’s death earlier in the day. The Bible says that it was around 3:00 am and they were three or four miles from shore in a terrible windstorm when Jesus showed up. Here’s part of the passage from John:
“Now when evening came, His disciples went down to the sea, got into the boat, and went over the sea toward Capernaum. And it was already dark, and Jesus had not come to them. Then the sea arose because a great wind was blowing. So when they had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Jesus walking on the sea and drawing near the boat; and they were afraid. But He said to them, “It is I; do not be afraid.” Then they willingly received Him into the boat, and immediately the boat was at the land where they were going.” John 6:16-21 (NKJV)
Mark 6:47,48 gives us more information: “Now when evening came, the boat was in the middle of the sea; and He was alone on the land. Then He saw them straining at rowing, for the wind was against them. Now about the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea, and would have passed them by.”
There is so much here that I could write an entire Bible study on this story. But here are a few points that jumped out at me from these verses.
The fact that the boat was in the middle of the sea really speaks to me. I never want to stretch to make an application, but I think it’s more than appropriate to say that He will meet us in the middle of our situation. When we feel we’re too far gone to be rescued, He can meet us there. You're not out of His reach. Don’t lose faith.
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