Morning Bible Study
Jesus has just
done an incredible thing, feeding a huge multitude, at least five thousand men,
not to mention the women and children.
And He did it all with five small loaves, and two small fish.
We are about to see Jesus walk on water.
Nowadays, walking on water is kind of the standard of perfection. In fact, some of the ways people use it can
kind of make you a little sick…forgive me …
“Tiger Walking On Water”
We’re going to look at someone who REALLY walked on water.
6:14-21 Walking on
:14 Then those men, when they had seen the sign that Jesus did, said, “This
is truly the Prophet who is to come into the world.”
:15 Therefore when Jesus perceived that they were about to come and take
Him by force to make Him king, He departed again to the mountain by Himself
– ginosko – to learn to know, come to
know, get a knowledge of
Jesus wasn’t wondering if they might make Him king. He KNEW it.
:15 take … by force
– harpazo – to seize, carry off by
force; to snatch out or away
In Jesus’ day there was a movement among the Jews to revolt against
Rome. This group was known as the “zealots”. These would be the rebels that would die at
Masada. One of Jesus’ disciples was a
zealot. They had a base of operations in
the Galilee area.
One group apparently hid in the caves near Mt. Arbel until the Romans came and exterminated
Jesus knew that the crowd was serious about violently grabbing and making
Him into the new King of Israel.
– anachoreo – to go back, return; to
withdraw; to leave a room; from choreo
– to leave space
You could say that Jesus needed some “space”. He “left the room”.
Jesus did not seem to want the people to make Him king.
I find it ironic in the day we live in when all we know are leaders who
will do anything to become “king”.
Jesus walks away from it. Why?
He knows that they are following Him for the wrong reasons.
They liked the
(Jn 6:26 NKJV) Jesus answered them
and said, “Most assuredly, I say to you,
you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves
and were filled.
The right reason
What is the right reason to follow Jesus?
God’s kingdom is coming, and you ought to be ready.
Getting ready involves a change in your life. It involves realizing that you are sinful,
unacceptable for God’s kingdom, and you turn your life around.
This was what John the Baptist was doing, in getting people ready to follow
(Mk 1:4–5 NKJV) —4 John came baptizing in
the wilderness and preaching a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. 5 Then all
the land of Judea, and those from Jerusalem, went out to him and were all
baptized by him in the Jordan River, confessing their sins.
This is what Jesus preached.
(Mk 1:14–15 NKJV) —14 Now after John
was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom
of God, 15 and saying, “The time is
fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.”
Jesus’ message was “repent”. That means to “turn around”.
Sometimes people become Christians because they hear that Christianity
They hear that it’s a way to a “better life”.
Some people have the audacity to tell you that you will become wealthy and never be sick
if you follow Jesus.
That’s exactly the mindset of the crowd that Jesus is
God’s kingdom is
coming. Jesus is going to return.
Are you ready to meet Him?
Are you ready to acknowledge that Jesus is the Son of God and that you
ought to be living your life the way that He wants you to?
:16 Now when
evening came, His disciples went down to the sea,
The day full of ministry had taken place on a hillside alongside the Sea of
They had come by boat and they are going to leave by boat.
Matthew (14:22) records that it was Jesus who made the disciples leave
while He sent the crowd home:
(Mt 14:22 NKJV) Immediately Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go
before Him to the other side, while He sent the multitudes away.
Perhaps Jesus was trying to rescue the disciples from getting caught up in
the crowd fervor in making Him king.
Some have suggested that Jesus was concerned that if the movement got out
of hand, that the Romans might come down hard on them.
While Jesus is
sending the disciples away from trouble, He is sending them into the storm.
:17 got into
the boat, and went over the sea toward Capernaum. And it was already dark, and
Jesus had not come to them.
– ploion – a ship
We have a clue
as to the kind of boats that were used on the Lake in Jesus’ time. They’ve actually found one. It had been buried in the lake mud until it
was discovered in 1986 near the Ginosar kibbutz. It’s now on display in a museum there.
It’s about 30
feet long, 8 feet wide.
The Sea of
Galilee is a big lake that’s 7 ½ miles wide at its widest, 12 ½ miles long.
Usually it’s pretty calm and flat.
clip from boat on Galilee.
They have been somewhere near the town of Bethsaida and now Jesus sends
them toward Capernaum.
had not come to them –
The evening had come, darkness was setting in, and they hadn’t seen Jesus
Did Jesus say that He would meet them? Why does John note it this way?
Perhaps Jesus had told the guys He’d meet them, but when it started to get
dark they left?
:18 Then the
sea arose because a great wind was blowing.
– diegeiro – to wake up, arouse from
– anemos – a very strong tempestuous
The area has an interesting geography that can lead to sudden winds and
Back in November 2007 we were on top of Mount Arbel when a storm came in.
Play Arbel 2007
The lake itself is 600 feet below sea level. It is surrounded by hills all around.
It’s not unusual for a west blowing wind to pick up in the afternoon on the
:19 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.
:19 three or four
miles – literally “twenty or thirty stadia”
A “stadion” is
the length of an ancient race course, about 600 feet.
If they started
west of Bethsaida, and remembering that the coastline in Jesus’ day was further
north, then at 3 miles they are about ¾ of the way to Capernaum.
Mark (6:48) tells us that it was during the “fourth watch” and that Jesus
acted like He was going to go past them.
– some time between 3 and 6 the morning.
:19 they saw
– to be a spectator, look at, behold; to view attentively
This isn’t the simple word “to see”.
When I see this word in Scripture, I think of somebody watching
something with their mouth
on the sea –
A mother was
watching her four-year-old child playing outside in a small plastic pool half
filled with water. He was happily walking back and forth across the pool,
making big splashes. Suddenly, he stopped, stepped out of the pool, and began
to scoop water out of the pool with a pail. “Why are you pouring the water out,
Jimmy?” the mother asked. “’Cause my teacher said Jesus walked on water, and
this water won’t work.” The boy replied.
The pastor, the
youth pastor and the worship leader all went fishing together one morning. The
latter two had been to the spot many times, and decided to bring the pastor
along with them. They’d been out for a couple of hours when the youth pastor
remembered that he had left his canteen on the shore. He stepped out of the
boat and proceeded to step lightly across the water. He got his canteen and
walked back. After a while, the worship leader ran out of bait, so he decided
to go back to shore to find some grubs. He too stepped out of the boat, walked
across the water, got what he needed and came back. The pastor had watched
quietly as the two walked on the water, his eyes round with amazement. Not
wanting to be outdone, he quickly thought of some reason to get out of the boat
also. He announced to the group that he was a little tired of fishing, and
thought he’d go get his Bible and read quietly in the boat while the other two
continued their fishing. He stepped out, and quickly sank. The worship leader
looked at the youth pastor and said, “You know, we probably should have told
him where the rocks are!”
We know that it wasn’t because Jesus had special water.
We also know that it wasn’t because Jesus knew where the rocks were.
Jesus is unique. He is awesome. He is powerful.
near the boat –
Mark (6:48) tells us that it looked like He was going to walk right by
:19 were afraid
– to put to flight by terrifying (to scare away); be afraid
Mark (6:49) tells
us that they thought it was a ghost:
Why did Jesus
wait so long before showing up?
You can’t say that Jesus was trying to punish the fellows.
He was the one that sent them out into the storm.
I’m not sure I know the reason.
There are going to be times when we have to learn to keep at the task, even
all night if we have to.
Sometimes we just don’t understand our circumstances, but we know we have
to keep going, we have to keep rowing.
(Ps 30:5b NKJV) …Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning.
(Ga 6:9 NKJV) And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we
shall reap if we do not lose heart.
Two frogs fell
into a can of cream,
Or so I've heard it told
The sides of
the can were shiny and steep,
The cream was deep and cold,
"Oh, what's the use?" said No. 1, "tis fate -- no help's
Good-bye, my friend! Good-bye, sad
And weeping still, he drowned.
But No. 2 of sterner stuff,
Dog paddled in surprise,
The while he wiped his creamy face
And dried his creamy eyes.
"I'll swim awhile, at least," he said
-- or so it has been said --
"It wouldn't really help the world
If one more frog was dead."
An hour or two he kicked and swam --
Not once he stopped to mutter,
But kicked and swam, and swam and kicked,
Then hopped out, via butter.
A page from John
Wesley's Diary reads as follows:
May 5, preached in St. Ann's, was asked not to come back anymore.
May 5, preached at St. John's, deacons said, "Get out and stay out."
May 12, preached at St. Jude's, can't go back there either.
May 12, preached at St. George's, kicked out again.
May 19, preached at St. somebody else's, deacons called special meeting and
said I couldn't return.
May 19, preached on the street, kicked off the street.
May 26, preached in meadow, chased out of meadow as a bull was turned loose
during the services.
June 2, preached out at the edge of town, kicked off the highway.
June 2, afternoon service, preached in a pasture, 10,000 people came to hear
:20 But He said
to them, “It is I; do not be afraid.”
:20 It is I
– ego eimi – “I am”. A Greek form of the name of God, Yahweh.
Because He, God, is with us, we do not need to be afraid.
(Ps 23:1–4 NKJV) 1 The Lord is my
shepherd; I shall not want. 2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He
leads me beside the still waters. 3 He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake. 4
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For
You are with me…
(14:28-32) gives us one more twist to
He tells us about Peter getting out of the boat and trying to walk on
water. But for time’s sake, we’ll leave
that tidbit for another time.
:21 Then they
willingly received Him into the boat, and immediately the boat was at the land
where they were going.
received Him –
The disciples actually had a choice.
They could have let Jesus pass by them.
They could have kept this “ghost” out of their boat.
They chose to receive Him.
So often, we’ve seen several times in the gospel of John that one of the
biggest issues that keep men from God is the “will”.
Man wants to be “self-willed”, and doesn’t like to think that he needs to
give up control of his life to God.
challenged the man who had been sick a long time:
(Jn 5:6 NKJV) …He said to him, “Do you want
to be made well?”
Jesus challenged the Jews:
(Jn 5:39–40 NKJV) —39 You search the
Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they
which testify of Me. 40 But you are not willing to come
to Me that you may have life.
John opened the gospel with this truth:
(Jn 1:11–12 NKJV) —11 He came to His
own, and His own did not receive Him. 12 But as many as received
Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe
in His name:
Philosophy is fine to discuss. And
sometimes people have real, legitimate questions they need answered.
But don’t hide behind philosophy when the real issue is that you just don’t
want to give yourself up to God.
:21 where they
were going –
They arrived at Capernaum.
Matthew (14:32) and Mark (6:51) tell us that when Jesus got into the boat, the
wind stopped as well.
(Mk 6:51b NKJV) …And they were greatly amazed in themselves beyond measure,
(Mt 14:33 NKJV) Then those who were in the boat came and worshiped Him,
saying, “Truly You are the Son of God.”
The disciples fell on their faces in awe before Jesus.
on Water” clip
Help in the storm
Mark tells us what Jesus was doing while His men were in the storm:
(Mk 6:46–48 NKJV) —46 And when He had sent
them away, He departed to the mountain to pray.
47 Now when evening came, the boat was in the middle of the sea; and He was
alone on the land. 48 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.
three words in the text: Pray, saw, and
1. He is praying
NKJV) Therefore He is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God
through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.
When we need help, it is good to get prayer. It’s good to call a friend and ask for
prayer. It’s good to put a prayer
request in the Agape Box.
It’s also really, really good to know that Jesus Himself is praying for
That’s the only real reason we make it in life. Jesus is praying for us.
2. He is watching
We wonder what’s taking Him so long.
But He knows what He’s doing.
He sees you.
(Ps 121:4–5 NLT) —4 Indeed, he who watches over Israel never slumbers or sleeps.5
The Lord himself watches over
you! The Lord stands beside you
as your protective shade.
3. He is coming
He hasn’t left you alone.
Help is on the way.
When the time is right, He will be there.
Leader” – Audio Adrenaline