The Scripture for today is Matthew 14:22-33, NIV.
Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountaintop by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone, and the boat was already a considerable distance from the land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it. Shortly before dawn Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said and cried out in fear. But Jesus immediately said to them, “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” “Lord, if it is you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.” “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”
In one of the commentaries of this passage that I read as I researched, this story was put in context. It happened after the feeding of the five thousand. At this time, Herod was threatening Jesus and his followers. It makes no mention of the disciples being frightened by the storm itself (they were fisherman and used to stormy seas), but they were greatly frightened by the vision of Jesus walking on the water. It may have been that they were afraid Herod had killed Jesus between the time they were with him as he healed, fed, and preached to the crowds, and the morning when they saw him. It may have been that, even though they had seen him perform miracles (i.e. healing and feeding of the five thousand), this was a miracle they could not quite believe.
Interesting. They had seen Jesus perform many miracles, but this frightened them. Some historians say that Matthew was writing this story during a time of unrest and persecution of the church. This story may have been written with an added message that God would get the church through that time if belief remained strong.
This message is as timely today as it was when it was first written. We as Christians see and trust in the love of God, but sometimes our faith waivers a little. Crises may happen and we wonder if God will save us, but if we believe, He will provide the ultimate safety and peace.
Dear Lord, Thank you for always giving us your protection and peace, if only we ask and truly believe. Strengthen our faith oh Lord, as we face the challenges of this life. Amen
Karla Gerke Karla56@charter.net
Prayer Concern: Our broken world and those who feel overwhelmed by current circumstances