Summary: A sermon on Jesus "Walking on Water" taken out of the Gospel of John but using other Gospels (Matthew and Mark) to fill in the story. The main point is that even though Jesus sometimes does not appear aware of our trials, sometimes shows up late, etc. He
Title: Walking on Water – June 5th, 2011
Pastor Chuck Gohn – Bellevue Christian Church, Bellevue PA 15202
Primary Passage: John 6.14-24
Media Used: PowerPoint Sermons: “Walk on Water”
Video Used: Sermon Spice Video: “Walking on Water”
If you have you Bibles open up to John 6.14. We have been going through the book of John and learning about the miracles and ministry of Jesus . Last week we looked at the miracle feeding of the 5,000. Next week we will be looking at the Bread of Life Discourse it is where Jesus spends a great amount of time reminding his followers that he is the Bread of Life; i.e., the supernatural provision of God.
But sandwiched between those two stories is the short story of Jesus walking on water. It is a story contained in three of four Gospels and like some of the other Gospel stories sometimes there are slight variations in some of the stories. We shouldn’t be alarmed by this. It does not mean that there are errors in the Bible, rather it should affirm the reliability of the Bible. Just like three or four people who witness an accident or crime scene would see that scene from different perspectives i.e., pick up certain details or place more emphasis on certain aspects of the story, it is the same with the gospel writers. Each gospel writer is viewing the event from their unique perspective and place emphasis on certain details of the story based upon the audience that they are attempting to reach. We are going to look at the book of John and use the other gospel versions of the event to patch in the story so that we might have a complete picture of the story of Jesus walking on water.
A little refresher about where we were last week in the book of John; Jesus wanted to get away because he was grieving the loss of his friend John the Baptist. So he goes the other side of the lake and before he knows it the crowd follows them. So rather than ignore them he ministers to them because he sees them as sheep without a shepherd. So he does what he does naturally , he heals the sick, he casts out demons, he teaches them, he encourages, them. And the crowd grows and so the disciples get concerned and Jesus turns to Philip and says: “where will we buy food for these people to eat?” and Philip replies: “8 months wages would not be able to purchase enough food for these people to eat!”
And so he looks to Andrew and he says: “well there is this boy here who has 5 loaves and 2 fishes but how far will that go?” Jesus basically says: “let me show you”. So he takes the bread and gives thanks and before they know it Jesus has multiplied the loaves and fishes and begins to distribute the food to the crowd. So much food is available that there ends up being 12 baskets left to give to the poor or others in need. The people were so impressed by that they wanted to take Jesus by force to make him king. So that is where we pick up the story. So let’s read through John 6.14-24.
Now of the three gospels that contain this story John’s gospel is the most sketchy about this story. He gives the impression that Jesus went off to a mountain and the disciples hop in a boat and go to the other side of the lake. But as we read this story we find that the disciples did not voluntarily get into the boat but rather Jesus had to make them get into the boat. We see this in the gospel of Matthew and Mark. Mark 6:45 says:
Immediately Jesus made his disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd. After leaving them, he went up on a mountainside to pray. Mark 6.4
So this verse gives the idea that maybe the disciples did not want to get into the boat and we ask “why?” Why would the disciples not want to get into the boat? Maybe they were fearful for Jesus. After all the people wanted to make Jesus king by force. So maybe they were worried for Jesus. Or maybe they were worried for themselves. Maybe they could see that a storm was brewing and maybe they didn’t want to be alone on a boat without Him.
Whatever the reason the point is that Jesus was up on a mountain and the disciples were alone on the boat on the Sea of Galilee. And all the gospels are consistent on the fact that when they went out on the boat after a few hours a storm came up. John writes: