Scripture: Matthew 14
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. Later that night, he was there alone, 24 and the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it. 25 Shortly before dawn 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 worshipped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”
I. The People’s Vision: Based On Their Needs
A. An Incredible Healer
“… He had compassion on them and healed their sick” (Matt 14:14)
“[The people of Gennesarat] brought all their sick to him 36 and begged him to let the sick just touch the edge of his cloak, and all who touched it were healed” (Matt 14:35–36)
They came to Jesus to have their sicknesses and their disabilities removed. They saw Him as one who could deliver them from their infirmities.
B. A Promised King
“14 After the people saw the sign Jesus performed, they began to say, “Surely this is the Prophet who is to come into the world.” 15 Jesus, knowing that they intended to come and make him king by force, withdrew again to a mountain by himself.” (John 6:14-15)
Jesus was the solution for their immediate need – healing and deliverance.
Are we simply treating God like a God of fortune?
Are we completely focused on ourselves, completely me-focused – bless me, heal me, protect me, give me?
When we have a vision of God based on our needs, we become people who are
- Focused on our own needs
- Focused on having things done our own way
II. The Disciples’ Vision: Based On Their Understanding
A. An Amazing Miracle-Worker
Jesus could do great miracles:
- Cleansed the leper (8:1-4)
- Healed Centurion’s paralyzed servant (8:5-13)
- Healed Peter’s MIL (8:14-15)
- Cast out demons and healed the sick (8:16-17)
- Calmed the storm (8:23-27)
- Cast out demons from demon-possessed men in the tombs (8:28-33)
- Healed paralytic lowered from the roof (9:1-8)
- Healed woman with issue of blood (9:20-22)
- Raised Jairus’ daughter from the dead (9:18, 23-26)
- Healed two blind men (9:27-31)
- Healed a man unable to speak (9:32-34)
- Healed withered man’s hand on Sabbath (12:9-14)
They saw the miracles yet could not recognize the power and authority Jesus had to do those things.
B. A Great Teacher
3 of 5 of Jesus’ discourses are found prior to Matt 14
- Matt 5-7: The Beatitudes, The Lord’s Prayer, Ask, Seek, Knock, etc.
- Matt 10: Missionary Discourse
- Matt 13: The Kingdom of Heaven described over 7 parables
“When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, because he taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law.” (Matthew 7:28-29)
Yet, the disciples
- Asked Jesus to explain His parables (cf Matt. 13:36)
- Misunderstood what He meant at times (cf. Matt 16:6-7)
- Could not comprehend Him at all (cf. Matt 8:27)
We don’t always understand what God is doing in our lives.
When we have a vision of God based on our limited understanding, we become people who are
- Focused on chasing supernatural signs
- Focused on achieving inward enlightenment.
III. Our Vision: Based On Our Faith
“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” (Heb 11:1)
“… blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” (John 20:29b)
A. The Saviour
- Believing that Jesus is our Saviour requires faith
- Peter believed that it was Jesus on the water, and since Jesus could walk on water, then Jesus could make Peter walk on water too. Peter had faith in Jesus.
- Peter fixed His eyes on Jesus, in spite of the circumstances, and he walked on water.
- Peter took his eyes off Jesus and onto the circumstances, and he began to sink.
B. The Son of God
“Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.” (v.33)
- Believing that Jesus is the Son of God requires faith.
With Jesus as our Saviour:
- He Heals our diseases
- He Delivers us from oppression
- He Forgives our sins
- He Restores broken relationships
- He Reconciles us back to God
With Jesus as the Son of God
- We can Trust God (Jn 1:1)
- We can Be Grateful to God (Jn 3:16)
- We can Love God (1 Jn 3:1)
- We can Live For God (Gal 2:20)
- We can Rely On God (Jn 14:16-17, 26)
“You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You.” (Isa 26:3)
Our vision of God cannot be simply based on our needs, or on our natural understanding.
We must have a vision of God based on our faith in Jesus as the Son of God, our Saviour.
“8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.” (Eph 2:8-9)
WHAT DO YOU SEE?
Take A Look At Jesus
“… And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith…” (Heb 12:1-2)
Have Faith in God, and Keep Your Eyes Fixed on Him.