Summary: The differnce that Jesus makes when He boards the ship.
Text: John 6:15-21 15. When Jesus therefore perceived that they would come and take him by force, to make him a king, he departed again into a mountain himself alone.
16. And when even was now come, his disciples went down unto the sea,
17. And entered into a ship, and went over the sea toward Capernaum. And it was now dark, and Jesus was not come to them.
18. And the sea arose by reason of a great wind that blew.
19. So when they had rowed about five and twenty or thirty furlongs, they see Jesus walking on the sea, and drawing nigh unto the ship: and they were afraid.
20. But he saith unto them, It is I; be not afraid.
21. Then they willingly received him into the ship: and immediately the ship was at the land whither they went.
Introduction: In the context of our passage we see that Jesus had just preformed a great and well-known miracle. He had just taken the five barley loaves and two small fishes that the little lad had made available and fed over five thousand men, not counting the women and children. After He had preformed this miracle He perceived that the crowd wanted to take Him by force and make Him a king. With His crowning hour not yet come He decided to retreat to the mountains to be alone. After He had detached himself from the crowd He sent His disciples away to cross over the Sea of Galilee to Bethsaida.
Now there are many avenues that we could take with this text that many of you have probably heard before. However, we would like to take a route that has been less traveled and approach the text in this manner. We would like to consider this text as a lost individual without Christ who is sailing the rough, tempestuous sea of life. When things look their darkest Jesus comes to them and they are delivered from the dangers that threaten to destroy them.
By God’s marvelous help we would like to examine our text at this time and ask this question; Is Jesus on board your ship?
I. Consider the Present Dilemma of the disciples. (Vv.16-18)
They were in quite a dilemma indeed. They were all alone on their little vessel while being tossed about in the darkness by the monstrous wind driven waves.
Consider with me the following three thoughts that well describe their dilemma, as well as the dilemma of others who are without Christ:
A. They were in Darkness. (Vv.17a)
…And it was now dark…
Does this not describe the condition of the individual who is lost? They are abiding in unutterable spiritual darkness. The Bible teaches us that the person who is unsaved is abiding in darkness.
~ II Corinthians 4:3-4 3. But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:
4. In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.
~ Colossians 1:12-13 12. Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:
13. Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:
B. They were Deserted. (Vv.17b)
…and Jesus was not come to them.
Does this not well describe the condition of the individual who is lost? The individual who is lost is an individual who is without Christ according to the Bible.
~ Ephesians 2:12 That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:
C. They were in Danger. (Vv.18)
And the sea arose by reason of a great wind that blew.
Does this not describe the condition of the Lost? They are in grave danger. They are in danger of everlasting destruction because they have not accepted Christ as their Savior. The Bible emphatically teaches that the wages of sin is death. I would call that danger wouldn’t you.
Hence we have the disciples and their present dilemma. They were in a real dilemma to say the least.
II. Consider the Pleasurable Discovery of the disciples. (Vv.19-20)
What was the discovery that was so pleasurable to these disciples? In the other Gospel accounts of this particular story we read that the disciples were scared. However, what appeared to be terribly frightening ended up being a tender comfort to them.
Consider the following about their pleasurable discovery:
A. The fact that He Cared for them was a pleasurable discovery.
I am quite sure that at this very point in their life that they probably began to feel as if Jesus did not care for them. The devil probably said to them, “You see He doesn’t care for you. If He cared at all you would not be out here by your self.”