27 “But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying,
“Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.”
28 And Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” 29 He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus.”
Matthew 14:27-29, (context, vv. 22-33)
Jesus is full of surprises! You can never guess the things He will do next. He is Lord after all. To walk on water is totally impossible. But Jesus does it. He walks on it as if it were a concrete sidewalk. He totally scares His disciples sitting in the boat. When they see Him they freak out. They couldn’t believe their eyes.
Jesus wants to reveal to His disciples His true nature. They had just seen Him multiply fish and loaves, He fed five thousand plus just a few hours ago. Wasn’t that a miracle enough? It seems that Jesus doesn’t think so. We now see Him strolling on the water like it was solid ground.
For some inexplicable reason, Peter wants to insert himself into Jesus’ miracle. Oddly, he has decided he’ll join Jesus, and leave behind the security of the boat–for the insecurity of the impossible! He truly believes that Jesus can hold him up somehow. Perhaps this alone is the most amazing part of this passage. Can a man duplicate the walk of Jesus? Can we walk like Him?
Peter really wants to leave the security of the boat, for the insecurity of the impossible.
It seems to me that we’re constantly doing the “Peter thing.” It’s true our walk of faith really is intensely supernatural, and yet we somehow forget this. Face it, we will never generate the “fruits of the Holy Spirit” on our own. Our most sincere effort simply will never turn water into something solid. We will never walk the disciple’s path without a faith in the Master who calls us to come to Him.
I think Jesus wants us to join Him. Our faith in Him is the key. We believe that we can walk with Him, we believe we will see the impossible. Without question it’s Jesus’ power that holds us up. Our faith in Him is the ignition point in all of this. Our mustard seed faith, combined with Jesus’ power. becomes the true walk of the disciple.
We must bravely launch ourselves into the purposes of God. To merely sit in the boat is hardly faith. When Peter steps over the gunwales, he steps into the world of the amazing. The water holds him, and his trust in Jesus solidifies like the water he walks on. He is now doing the impossible. He is now becoming very much like Jesus.
Our walk seems terribly weak at times, we can easily list our sin and weaknesses, our spiritual ugliness. We’re not quite convinced that the blood of Jesus covers all our sin–and we can’t step out of the boat. I think it’s Peter’s faith in Jesus’ power that holds him up. When his faith falters, he does the “rock thing,” There is something about his circumstances–the wind, and the waves that begin to frighten him. (But I must believe Jesus was pleased.)
Just let him sink, and teach the 11 who sit in the boat about the perils of unbelief? Nope.
Fear trumps faith. Adversity always frightens. We sink when our flawed faith can no longer hold us up. The amazing thing though, Jesus doesn’t change His mind or heart, He is still in the business of doing miracles. He calls His disciples to believe in Him–to have faith in His power. To really understand, to step out in faith, and to see miracles happen.
“Christ will always accept the faith the puts its trust in Him.”