Summary: What does it take to walk on the waters of faith? This message looks at what we can learn from Peter as he stepped out of the boat and walked on water
Water Walking 101
Walking on Water requires
Obedience to Jesus’ Commands appears Risky
Dependence on our own wisdom actually is Risky
We are about 2/3 of the way done with the New Testament Challenge. Just 1/3 left, so I want to encourage you to keep going.
As we have been reading through the New Testament, we have also been talking about some of the major themes of the New Testament as well.
We have talked about faith, grace, serving, hope, love, prayer and living for eternity.
Over the next several weeks we are going to be talking about applications of some of the teachings of the New Testament.
James 1:22 says
“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”
Learning the word and actually doing it are not the same thing. How can we actually do some of the things we talked about, especially those things that seem impossible to us?
Turn with me to Matthew 14:22-33
Today, we are going to look at the example of Peter in the New Testament and an absolutely humanly impossible act that Jesus told Peter to do, and we are going to see what it takes to actually do it.
Now, Just to give a little context to what we are going to read, Jesus has just done a miracle in the feeding of 5000 men from 5 loaves and 2 small fish. And it goes on and says in
22 Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. 23 After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, 24 but the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.
25 During the fourth watch of the night Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. 26 When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. "It's a ghost," they said, and cried out in fear. 27 But Jesus immediately said to them: "Take courage! It is I. Don't be afraid." 28 "Lord, if it's you," Peter replied, "tell me to come to you on the water."
29 "Come," he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, "Lord, save me!"
31 Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. "You of little faith," he said, "why did you doubt?"
32 And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. 33 Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, "Truly you are the Son of God."
Now, I have titled this message, Water Walking 101, and even though it would be very cool to walk on water, I am not sure that any of us are going to actually walk on top of the water unless it is ice covered.
I can tell you though, that when we follow what the Lord calls us to do, even if it seems like we would never be able to do it, it can feel like you are walking on water!
Let’s see what we can learn from this Scripture that enabled Peter to at least begin to walk on water so we too, might be able to follow Christ’s call in our lives.
One of the first things we learn is that
Walking on Water requires Courage
Matthew 14:27 - But Jesus immediately said to them: "Take courage! It is I. Don't be afraid."
We are going to repeatedly find ourselves in circumstances that are scary and that require courage.
Maybe awaiting medical results from your doctor
Or Bullying from others in your school
Or facing the possibility of being downsized
Or maybe you are facing the possibility of or actuality being foreclosed on
Or facing uncertainties of relationship challenges
Those circumstances can be scary and uncertain.
The disciples at this point are facing a circumstance that is scary and uncertain.
They have been in a boat for about 7 or 8 hours on a journey that should have taken a couple hours and it is now at least 3 in the morning and they are continuing to battle against a storm with winds and waves and they are in the middle of the sea of Galilee and then, in their exhaustion, not knowing if they are going to make it, they think they see a ghost walking on the water.
Maybe going through their minds is this is the end for us. We are never going to make it and now a ghost or the grim reaper is coming to get us. They are completely terrified crying out in fear.