Dark And Stormy Night
Calamities, such as storms, earthquake, drought, tsunamis, devastate our lives and leaves people in shock, in sorrow, sometimes hopeless. I’ve seen the television coverage of the damage and the death cause by the Boxing Day tsunami, and so is the tragedy caused by hurricane Katrina, and it’s just so scary.
Storms are frightening, dangerous, as well as destructive. In our text today, the disciples have entered into a ship to pass over the Sea of Galilee and find themselves in the midst of a storm.
Mark 4:37 “And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into the ship, so that it was now full.”
This morning, I want to apply some thoughts concerning actual storms to personal storms we find ourselves in the midst. What is your storm? Family problems? Financial struggles? Trouble at work? Friends letting you down?
I. Some facts about storms.
A. Storms are not always predictable.
B. Storms come in different categories and strength (they even categorize hurricanes!).
C. Storms usually involve many factors involving in the right (or wrong!) “mix”.
D. Storms are – by definition – powerful, a wind velocity of 180-220 kilometres per hour is no joke
E. Storms are dangerous and out of control!
F. Storms instil fear in us, and makes even the brave pray and call upon the name of the Lord.
G. Storms make us prepare and be ready for the unexpected, makes friend and enemies work together
H. Sometimes storms pass over and leave as if nothing happened
II. How To Get Through A Storm
A. To survive a storm we must have a strong foundation.
Mat 7:24-25 “Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: 25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.”
1. Two important things – hearing and doing the Word.
2. James reminds us that if we do not do both, we are just fooling ourselves.
James 1:22 “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.”
3. Our foundation must be the Word of God.
4. It is unchangeable…when all else is shifting sand, the Word of God stands like the Rock immovable and solid.
5. A good foundation requires:
a. A real relationship with Jesus Christ.
b. A rich relationship with His Word that includes:
1) Devotional reading
2) Bible study
3) Pastoral teaching (Ephesians 4)
4) Practical application
5) Personal declaration
1. Listen to Jesus’ question in v. 40.
Mark 4:40 “And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith?”
2. Faith is believing in God’s character.
3. It is taking God at His Word.
a. Believe that He sees the storm
b. Believe that He is sovereign over the storm
c. Believe that all storms will pass
d. Believe that storms prepare us for the “better”
Mark 4:41 “And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?”
1. The meaning of ‘Fear’.
a. Some form of the verb “fear” is found over five hundred times in our Bible.
b. Sometimes the word means “reverence.”
1) This is the kind of fear that we should have for our God.
2) When pharaoh of Egypt ordered the midwives to kill baby boys, they “feared God and did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them” (Exodus 1:17).
3) God honored the midwives for their response to Him and He blessed them Ex. 1:21.
4) Later, the Israelites “saw the great work which the Lord had done in Egypt; so the people feared the Lord, and believed the Lord” (Exodus 14:31).
5) The prophet Samuel taught his people “to fear the Lord and serve him in truth” (I Samuel 12:24).
6) And King David prayed, “Unite my heart to fear Your name” (Psalm 86:11).
c. But “fear” is most often used to mean “terror.” as in v. 40.
1) In this sense it is a negative response.
2) Today many people live in fear.
3) But Jesus came to bring the kingdom of God to us, and to show us His power over all these things.
4) There is no need to fear.
5) He taught His disciples-and us-that fear is the opposite of faith.
2. We need a healthy fear of God to get us through the storm.
Psa. 25:14 “The secret of the LORD is with them that fear him; and he will show them his covenant.”
3. This holy and healthy fear is a sense of God’s presence and power that leads to obey and support the Lord’s work.
4. This fear will motivate us to victory and will keep us from foolish attitudes and actions that will harm His Work.
Jesus is in the storm with us! He cares about us and He will get us through the storms!
(Mark 4:39) “And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.”
Preached: 22 September 2013