Series 3 of 3
By Pastor Jarrel S. Sena
The Omnipotence Over the Storm
When Jesus awoke, He quickly responded to the disciples’ plea to save them. He rebuked the fierce weather and it quickly obeyed Him.
Afterwards, He rebuked His chosen disciples, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?”
Underscore the disciples’ reaction, “They became very much afraid and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?” Phobeo is the Greek word for “became afraid” and it came from phobos where we get the word “phobia.” First the disciples were afraid of the winds and the waves but now they were afraid of the Lord Jesus Christ.
This, I believe, is not the fear they have for the tempest but it refers to the holy and healthy fear that God alone deserves.
For us believers of the Lord Jesus let me offer to you 4 Ps that we can remember in facing the storms in our lives as we follow His direction.
1. Jesus' Promise What is Jesus’ plan or promise to His disciples? Let us again read Mark 4:35, “Let us go over the other side.” Notice that Jesus plans to go over the other side with His disciples. That’s His plan for that day and it indeed happened. The Lord has made promises for us and these should sustain us in dealing with life’s troubles and trials. God’s plan for you will be realized because whatever He decrees will surely come to pass.
Like the disciples, we become worried or fearful by the unexpected trials that we encounter in following our Lord’s direction. This is true for every Christian even to those who have already walked with the Lord for so many years. Like the professional fishermen in that boat, seasoned Christians may still display worry and fear in dealing with the storms in this life.
2. Jesus' Presence From Jesus’ perspective, the disciples’ fear is unwarranted because He was with them. The Bible is clear that when a sinner trusts Jesus, his life will be hidden in Him (Colossians 3:3). Furthermore, according to Jesus Himself, His authentic followers (characterized by a life of growing obedience) will experience the presence of the Father and the Son, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him.” Go back to Mark 4:36 and remind yourself that when Jesus sailed to get to the other side of the Sea of Galilee, “other boats were with Him” but there is only one boat that had Jesus in it. Is Jesus in your life already? Have you received Him as your Lord and Savior because that is the most important thing in this life, especially in this season of worldwide pandemic?
3. Jesus’ Peace What was Jesus doing when He was in the boat? He was soundly asleep. In other words, Jesus Himself was not worried at all. This is vital for us to grasp: Jesus is not shaken by any form of danger therefore we can hope that nothing could intimidate Him. Let Jesus’ peace be our peace. If He is calm, let us also be calm. Let us rest in our Lord’s peace.
In Jesus one can find peace with God. This is the most important peace that we should seek. One of the truths that make my day every time I wake up is the fact that I am at peace with God. This means that when I die, irrespective of the manner of death, the next place my eyes will behold is God’s Heaven. That is my destination in the afterlife, not because I am good, in fact I am a sinner since birth, and the only reason I can enter into God’s presence is because I have been saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone. Paul speaks about this reconciliation with God through His Son in 2 Corinthians 5:18-19, “Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.”
4. Jesus' Power According to the disciples, the winds and the waters “obey Jesus.” At that very moment Jesus’ authority over the created order was put in display. The whole creation obeys Jesus because He is the One who created everything, “For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.” (Colossians 1:16-17)
In similar vein John declares in the opening section of His gospel, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being… And the Word became flesh, anddwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:1-3, 14)
Mark’s intention in accounting this event is to establish Jesus’ deity by showcasing His divine authority:
a. His authority over the created order. (Mark 4:35-41)
b. His authority over the demonic forces. (Mark 5:1-20)
c. His authority over diseases. (Mark 5:25-34)
d. His authority over death. (Mark 5:21-24, 35-43)
Please notice that all of these are capable of hurting us but they are under Jesus’ sovereign power. Believers can face whatever storms for the very reason that their Lord and Savior is over and above of the known creation. COVID-19 is under Jesus’ authority. It is operating within the parameters Jesus has set. Let us not allow to live in fear due to this virus because it is subservient to our Lord’s power.
A story was told about a commercial aircraft which is about to fly through a storm. The passengers were told to fastened their seatbelts to ensure their safety.When the turbulence was felt, all of the passengers were either anxious or panicking except for a little girl sitting by the window and reading her book. When the plane reached its destination, one of the passengers asked the little girl about her disposition during the turbulence. Her simple reply was, "My daddy is the pilot. He will take me home."
In this COVID-19 storm, recall that Jesus is with us. He is at the stern and is in complete control of the situation. I am convinced that if He can calm the raging waters, He can also calm our distressed hearts. Let us put our trust in Him at this time of crisis. He will surely get us through this. He will take us home.