Summary: In a fishing boat on the Sea of Galilee, Jesus performed a miracle that was so great, the Apostles came to see that Jesus was truly God in the Flesh.
THREE LEVELS OF FEAR IN THE MIDST OF THE PRESENCE AND POWER OF GOD
[I had posted this sermon a few weeks ago on here, but am reposting it after several revisions I had made to it.]
1.) This morning I want us to see an account of a great miracle that Jesus performed on the Sea of Galilee.
2.) I know that the account we are going to look at is one we are very familiar with, and perhaps because of our familiarity with the account we may even miss the main detail in this account.
3.) Today, I want us to see three levels of fear these apostles had on the Sea of Galilee in the midst of the very presence and power of God.
4.) The background to this passage of Scripture is that the Pharisees had just accused Jesus of using the power of Satan to cast out demons.
A.) Jesus then gave many teachings to the people.
B.) as evening came, Jesus dismissed the crowds and here on the Sea of Galilee Jesus performs a miracle for the apostles that would leave no doubt in their minds that the miracles he was performing was by the power of God alone.
I. THE APOSTLES WERE FACED WITH THE FEAR OF THE STORM.
1.) A furious squall came up.
A.) Those who work on the water, are used to storms and rough seas.
aa.) For anyone working on the water, high winds and seas are just part of the perils that go along with the job.
ab.) The Psalmist spoke of the ocean, and of working on the sea, and the power of God as it is displayed in the powers of the deep.
aba.) Psalm 107:23-27
B.) The Sea of Galilee often experiences storms.
ba.) The geography around the Sea of Galilee is such that when storms come they are often very sudden with little or no warning, and many times rapidly become very severe literally in just a matter of minutes.
bb.) On both the Eastern and Western sides of the Sea of Galilee there are high mountain steeps with the Sea itself being 700 feet below sea level.
bba.) The extreme contrast in geography makes for some very sudden and severe storms when the winds come down the mountain steeps and into the Sea.
bbb.) Certainly the New Testament Scriptures many times describe of such storms on this sea.
bbc.) Many of the fishing boats on this Sea have been greatly challenged in the storms.
C.) In more recent years the discovery has been made of an ancient fishing boat from around the time of Jesus.
ca.) In the winter of1986 after several years of drought an old abandoned fishing boat was found in the silty bottom of the Sea of Galilee.
cb.) That particular boat would have been typical of the fishing boats used in that area when Jesus walked on this earth, and up to about a century ago.
cc.) This particular boat would have been 27 feet in length, 7 ½ feet in width, and about 4.3 feet deep, and after twelve years of preservation has been put on permanent display in a museum.
cd.) Carbon-dating on this boat has dated it between 120 B.C., and A.D.40. (http://www.seetheholyland.net/jesus-boat/).
ce.) This particular boat was a fishing boat, but it was also one that could accommodate up to 15 people in the boat.
cea.) Certainly in that day without engines and machinery they needed more men on the boats to haul up the nets.
ceb.) On more than one occasion the New Testament Scriptures record Jesus and the twelve disciples getting into one or two fishing boats to cross the Sea.
cf.) Certainly, this boat that was discovered would have been typical of the style of fishing boats that would have been used by Jesus and the twelve.
cg.) It is also possible that many of the fishing boats would have been much smaller than this particular boat, and therefore would find it quite a challenge in the midst of one of these storms on the Sea.
2.) The waves came over the boat.
-- Mark 4:37
A.) As fishermen, I am sure this is a sight they had seen and experienced many times before.
B.) But this time the waves continued to keep coming over the bow of the boat.
ba.) Picture the scene: As the waves continue to break over the bow of the boat the men are bailing the boat, tending the sails and manning the oars trying to get back to shore.
baa.) No matter how hard these men worked at staying afloat, the situation only continued to get worse and more and more hopeless.
bb.) This experience on the sea brought them to something new.