You Can Count On Christ
22 Immediately He made the disciples get into the boat and go ahead of Him to the other side, while He dismissed the crowds.
23 After dismissing the crowds, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. When evening came, He was there alone.
24 But the boat was already over a mile[h] from land, battered by the waves, because the wind was against them.
25 Around three in the morning, He came toward them walking on the sea.
26 When the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost!” they said, and cried out in fear.
27 Immediately Jesus spoke to them. “Have courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”
28 “Lord, if it’s You,” Peter answered Him, “command me to come to You on the water.”
29 “Come!” He said. And climbing out of the boat, Peter started walking on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But when he saw the strength of the wind, he was afraid. And beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me!”
31 Immediately Jesus reached out His hand, caught hold of him, and said to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?”
32 When they got into the boat, the wind ceased.
1. You Can Count on Challenges
Exhausted, on their own, facing the stormy sea, seeing a ghost … scripture says they were terrified. What challenges to your own commitment to Christ can leave you terrified?
Ephesians 6:10-16 Finally, be strengthened by the Lord and by His vast strength. 11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can stand against the tactics[g] of the Devil. 12 For our battle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the world powers of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavens. 13 This is why you must take up the full armor of God, so that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having prepared everything, to take your stand.
2. You Can Count on Courage (MT 14:28-29). In moments when it is needed most, we can have the courage to walk by faith! There are things that can take away our courage …but we should never be afraid to do what is needed /right. We are to advance the gospel in this community. “Our job is not to make Jesus acceptable, but available!” Richard Rogers
1 Corinthians 9:22 I have become all things to all people, so that I may by every possible means save some.
Hebrews 3:4-6 But Christ was faithful … hold on to the courage and the confidence of our hope.
Psalm 31:24 Be strong and courageous, all you who put your hope in the Lord.
3. You Can Count on Collapse (MT 14:29-30)
Fear leads to collapse and Peter started sinking. None of us escapes failure. The only limit to the growth of our church and our own personal growth is the size of our faith. When we get out of the boat we must remain focused on Christ. When we feel most alone, hurt, or in the storms of life – where are you looking?
Psalm 109:26-27 Help me, Lord my God; save me according to Your faithful love so they may know that this is Your hand and that You, Lord, have done it.
4. You Can Count on Christ! (MT 14:31-32)
There are several miracles of Christ here. Jesus he did not remove all of the burdens from Peter’s life. (even when warned, Peter denied him. Later Peter would give his life for him.) He doesn’t always still the storms…but sometimes he does. He always reaches out his hand, though, and we must not doubt that He is near us at all times. Even though Jesus rebukes Peter for not having enough faith, he does not reject Peter. With Jesus, it is safe to be weak / needy
Matthew 14:32-33 When they got into the boat, the wind ceased. Then those in the boat worshiped Him and said, “Truly You are the Son of God!”
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All Scriptures from the Holman Christian Standard Bible. Audio of this message will be posted soon.