Summary: Followers of Jesus can have hope though His divine 1) Authority (Matthew 14:22–23), 2) Knowledge (Matthew 14:24–25), 3) Protection (Matthew 14:26–27), 4) Love (Matthew 14:28-31), and divine 5) Power (Matthew 14:32-33).
In his article, "Ten Years Later", R.C. Sproul said: "A full decade has passed since America suffered the tragedy of 9/11. Ten years ago, I repeatedly heard the question raised: “Where was God in all of this? Where was God on 9/11 when the planes crashed into the twin towers in New York, the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., and a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania?” My answer then was the same as it is now: God was in the precise place on 9/11 that He was on the day before and the day after. He was on His throne then and continues to be on His throne now because He is the Lord God omnipotent who reigns. He reigns day in and day out in consistent manifestation of His immutable sovereignty. God is immutable, unchanging, even though people and cultures continually change". (http://www.ligonier.org/learn/articles/ten-years-later-2/)
In the midst of the storm we don’t feel like God loves us. We feel like He has abandoned us. In Matthew 14, we see a storm raging on the sea of Galilee, and the disciples feel abandoned by Jesus but Peter obeys Christ who was within his reach. He takes a step of obedience. That step meant leaving the apparent safety of the boat, and taking a step of obedience.
Within the events of Matthew 14:22–33 are five demonstrations, or proofs, of Jesus’ deity that gave the disciples’ hope in the midst of the storm. Followers of Jesus can have hope though His divine 1) Authority (Matthew 14:22–23), 2) Knowledge (Matthew 14:24–25), 3) Protection (Matthew 14:26–27), 4) Love (Matthew 14:28-31), and divine 5) Power (Matthew 14:32-33).
1) Hope Through His Divine Authority (Matthew 14:22–23)
Matthew 14:22-23 Immediately he made the disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, (ESV)
Jesus demonstrated His divine authority over the multitudes, who, despite their great numbers (probably twenty-five thousand or more), could not make Jesus do anything contrary to His Father’s plan and will. After He sent the disciples on their way to Capernaum, He dismissed the crowds/sent the multitudes away as well. John 6:15: notes that the people “were about to come and take him by force that they might make him king.” Jesus, whose kingdom is spiritual, refuses to become involved in any such definitely earthly, Jewish, political scheme (Hendriksen, W., & Kistemaker, S. J. (1953-2001). Vol. 9: New Testament commentary : Exposition of the Gospel According to Matthew. New Testament Commentary (598). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.).
To prevent that from happening, Jesus “withdrew again to the mountain by Himself alone” (v. 15b). He was indeed the predicted King, but He would not establish His earthly kingdom at that time. In any case, it was not the crowd’s prerogative to crown Him.
Please turn to Matthew 28
There is a tendency during momentous times to turn the events for political gain: 9/11 being a prime example. The Kingdom of God is not a political endeavor. We will not achieve the Kingdom through elections. God’s righteousness is of the heart and it is the Church’s job to proclaim the Kingdom.
The proclamation of the Gospel in the Great Commission is the proclamation of Jesus authority:
Matthew 28:18-20 And Jesus came and said to them, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age." (ESV)
• The Gospel is not in a political savior, but one who truly has all authority. It is a message of obedience to Him. Although, in the midst of the storm we doubt His presence, He assures us that He is indeed with us: this is truly a message of hope.
John identifies the specific destination for the disciples on the other side as Capernaum (John 6:24) and Mark as Gennesaret (6:53), a small, fertile plain on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee between Capernaum and Magdala. It was a short trip across the northern tip of the sea, one that most of the disciples had made many times. But they resisted leaving now, not only because of the enthusiasm of the crowd to make Jesus king but also because they did not want to be separated from Jesus. Although they were weak in faith and easily influenced, they nevertheless were deeply devoted to the Lord and felt incomplete and vulnerable when He was not with them. They may also have not wanted to leave then because they could feel the wind starting to blow and were cautious about making even that short trip after dark in bad weather.