Walking on Water
Jesus and His disciples had spent the day with some 5,000 plus people. Jesus taught them and then he miraculously fed them all with five loaves of bread and two fishes. After Jesus taught all those people, He put His disciples into a boat and had them set sail for the other side of the Sea of Galilee. Meanwhile, Jesus went off by Himself to pray. The disciples were in the boat, far away from land when a storm came on them. The wind was strong and “they were rowing against big waves.” To their shock, they saw somebody coming towards them. They thought it was a spirit or a ghost, and they cried out in fear. But it was Jesus! “Be of good cheer; it is I be not afraid.” They had been out there for nine hours. Probably sleepless, exhausted, and being an experienced fishermen, using all their skills to survive.
I have heard sermons on “Walking on the Water” and majority if not all, used to describe it as something impossible or hard to believe.
It looks like life, is filled with impossibilities. Almost every Christian has said at one time or another, “I thought when I became a Christian things wouldn’t be so difficult.”
Peter and the disciples were with Jesus almost all the time and still this trial came to them.
Jesus knew that the storm was about to strike but He intentionally directed them into it!
However, they were safer “in” the storm within the will of God than on dry ground with the crowd “out” of His will.
Why would Jesus lead them into a storm?
I. Storms and the reason for them.
1. Just as sure as the Lord “sends rain on the just and on the unjust.” (Mt. 5:45) He allows storms to come upon the Christian and the non-Christian alike.
2. The Bible indicates that there are three primary kinds of storms that come to us from our Lord:
a. Storms of correction—to right , to discipline, to get our attention.
b. Storms of perfection—to build character in us, to deepen our faith and make us more sensitive to the suffering of others.
c. Storms of reproduction—to cause others to imitate our response to suffering or to choose our Christ.
3. There is no oil without squeezing – No wine without pressing the grapes – No fragrance without crushing the flowers – And no real joy without sorrow.
When they first manufactured golf balls, they made the covers smooth. Then they discovered that after a ball had been roughed up one could get more distance out of it. So they started manufacturing them with dimpled covers. So it is with life; it takes some rough spots to make us go the farthest.
4. Going through a storm changes our priorities.
5. Going through a storm gives us the opportunity to re-focus – Take a look at where we are and what we are doing.
6. So if you’re going through a storm consider that the storm may be in God’s will for you.
7. What’s your storm or storms?
II. The presentation of a Choice.
1. When the disciples saw Jesus they were afraid and then came His words, “Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid.”
2. Most of the time choices come in times of trials and difficulties.
3. All 12 men were presented with a choice: to jump or to sit in the boat.
4. The disciples were afraid – Fear is probably one of the greatest distractors that we have to deal with!
5. These disciples had never been given a choice like this one before!
6. 11 of the disciples accommodated their faith by inactivity (They remained in the boat). “Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.” (James 2:17)
7. Do you want to be where Jesus is?
III. TAKING THE PLUNGE.
1. I’m sure that Peter thought he had seen everything there was to see as far as storms on the Sea of Galilee was concerned
2. “If it’s you Lord, bid me come to you on the water.” Do we have the right to put conditions on whether or not we walk by faith? – Yes! – we have an example when Gideon asked for a sign with the fleece. (Judges 6:36-40.
3. The plunge Peter took here was the bravest of all. This is “real courage” just like when Abraham offered Isaac – The three Hebrews are also a model of total trust in God.
4. If you are going to “Walk on Water” you MUST “Get out of the Boat.”
5. This is a picture of divine love and power meeting human need.
6. Anyone can sit in a boat and watch, but it takes a person of real faith to leave the boat and walk on water.
IV. WALKING ON WATER.
1. Peter didn’t know that he could walk on water until he stepped out of the boat.
2. When his foot hit the water is when the miracle kicked in.
3. Here are four principles for “Water-Walkers.”
4. Don’t listen to the people in the boat (for those who says no)
5. Don’t look at the waves (circumstances)
6. Don’t look “Down” at your feet (self)
7. Keep your eyes on JESUS!
8. Jesus revealed Himself in most unlikely place and in a highly unlikely manner.
9. To do the work of Christ we must join Him where He is!
10. To do the works of Christ we must join Him in what He is doing!
11. It matters not how dark the circumstances or the crisis; Jesus can meet you wherever you are!
12. You’re not ready to get out of the boat of mediocrity till your eyes are firmly planted on Jesus Christ!
Peter’s simple obedience created a statement that’s been used ever since that day.
Peter just went!
Life’s greatest experiences comes through simple obedience. Would you come to Christ also disregarding everything looking only at Him?