Summary: “Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, ‘Peace, be still!’ And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.” Mark 4:39.
Theme: Jesus calms the storm
Text: 1 Sam. 17:32-49; 2 Cor. 6:1-13; Mk. 4:35-41
The Scriptures declare that Jesus Christ is God. John begins with the words “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God”. God, the Word, became flesh and lived among us. His perfect life and sacrifice made our salvation possible so that we could live His life. We become Christians when we believe the good news and He empowers us to live His life. Unfortunately there is a big difference between our lives and the life of Christ. It appears we either do not know His Word, or we do not believe His Word. Sometimes we even change His words or interpret them the way it suits us. The result is we end up living lives that are contrary to the Word of God instead of lives that are according to His Words. As Christians we are often affirming our belief in Christ while living in a way that says another thing about us. It is only by living in accordance with the Word of God that we overcome the storms we face in life.
There is nobody in the world that will not face a storm during his or her life. These storms are often directed at our families, our health, our kids, our job, or at our finances. The effects of the storm however, depend on how prepared we are to deal with them. We cannot deal with the storms of life by ourselves. We need the help of the One who overcame all storms, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. We need to enter into a relationship with Him and this begins by hearing the gospel. The gospel has within it the faith we need to believe. Faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ” Rom. 10:17. The Word of God imparts faith to the hearers so that they can believe the gospel and be saved by His grace “For by grace we have been saved through faith” (Eph. 2:8). We cannot boast of our salvation because we did not do anything to deserve it. We receive it only because of what God has done for us. All that we needed for salvation came from God so it is only logical that all that we need for our new life will also have to come from Him. We live our new life by grace. The grace of God means much more that God’s undeserved favour. It also refers to God’s enabling power in our lives to overcome sin.
Grace saves us and empowers to live the life of Christ.
The Christian experience is from start to finish, a journey of faith. Through faith we come into possession of a new life and through it we walk in this new life. But today many Christians would rather believe the advertisements they see or hear about than believe what the Word of God declares. It really appears that we are prepared to believe anything but the Word of God. If, for example, your boss were to promise you a raise in salary, you would believe him and not question it and go home rejoicing. So why do we question what God says? It is because the devil is busy trying to convince man to believe what is contrary to the word of God. Once Satan can get us to believe what is contrary to the Word of God he has won a victory over us and brought us under his influence. When Saul chose to act contrary to the Word of God by choosing to please the people rather than to obey God he came under the control of the devil and the kingdom was taken from him and given to David. David showed his love for God by his total reliance on Him when he faced Goliath. The just shall live by faith and as Christians we are to have the mindset of Christ and act in accordance with the Word of God. We cannot say we are His children and continue to do what we want. If we love the Lord our desire would be to please Him.
In the course of our lives there are many storms that will come up that are orchestrated by evil forces. Their purpose is to make us miserable and finally destroy us. The believer however, should see such storms as challenges and an opportunity to exercise their faith. Faith believes the Word and leads to an opportunity to exercise the authority and power that Christ has restored to us. “Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you” Luke 10:19. The exercise of our faith and authority gives us the opportunity to celebrate the victory of Christ over the devil and over evil.