Hello. Today on our Foundations daily podcast we’re looking at Mark 6:45-56. Again we have another very familiar passage, Jesus walks on water. You probably know how the story goes. The disciples set sail across the lake, which is actually the Sea of Galilee so a significant area of water. They’re working hard on the oars because there’s a bit of a storm happening, when they see Jesus wandering past, walking on the water. They’re afraid so He gets in, calms the wind and everyone is amazed.
Stories like this in the New Testament are so important. We can often think of Jesus as our friend. As our helper, perhaps our councillor or guide. Someone to encourage us a little when we need lifting up. All that is true. Jesus does meet us in all those ways. However He is much more than that as well. He is creator of the universe, mighty God. Stories like this are vital in reminding us of who Jesus is.
In this passage we see Jesus revealing some of His Godly character. In verse 48 it says ‘Shortly before dawn he went out to them, walking on the lake.’ Jesus walks on water. Verse 54-55 says ‘As soon as they got out of the boat, people recognized Jesus. They ran throughout that whole region and carried the sick on mats to wherever they heard he was.’ Verse 56 says ‘They begged him to let them touch even the edge of his cloak, and all who touched it were healed.’
Jesus walks on water, gathers huge crowds seemingly with no effort and heals all He comes into contact with. He truly is an awesome God. This isn’t just a superhero mode that is activated when danger calls. He doesn’t put on a suit and gain these abilities. Throughout Mark we increasingly see this picture of a human Jesus who at the same time as sleeping, resting and eating, reveals His Godly character to us.
For us today what does it mean to step back and see Jesus for the beyond awesome one true God that He is? Well to pick up on just one area, it means that worship becomes more than just a pleasant pastime. We don’t come to Church on a Sunday and lives our lives in a worshipful way because Jesus is kind of good. Because He’s a nice reason to hang out with our friends. Because it gives us a little spiritual top up for the week. We worship because He is utterly worthy of praise. Utterly good and wise. Utterly without sin. He IS love. He IS peace. He IS wholeness, joy, grace. His holiness demands a response of us.
To finish let’s go back to the passage briefly. Despite all that we’ve just talked about being true, Jesus doesn’t perform any of these miracles for His own gain. Most of the acts of great power that we see in Mark’s Gospel, particularly this passage are aimed at helping individuals. The healings were great in number, but all out of compassion for individuals. The gathering of crowds were not done in campaign rally style but to teach people how to live life better. Even walking on water, the phrase ‘pass by’ reminds us of the Old Testament where God would ‘pass by’ the prophets. God was FOR His people but now, in Jesus, God was and is WITH His people.
Let’s remember God’s awesomeness today.
Father God, whose hands made each star in the sky and every grain of sand on the beach, be with us today. Help us to be mindful that we serve an awesome God. Thank you for these incredible passages that reveal more of who you are to us today. Amen.
READING: Mark 6:45-56
Immediately Jesus made his disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd. After leaving them, he went up on a mountainside to pray.
Later that night, the boat was in the middle of the lake, and he was alone on land. He saw the disciples straining at the oars, because the wind was against them. Shortly before dawn he went out to them, walking on the lake. He was about to pass by them, but when they saw him walking on the lake, they thought he was a ghost. They cried out, because they all saw him and were terrified.
Immediately he spoke to them and said, ‘Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.’ Then he climbed into the boat with them, and the wind died down. They were completely amazed, for they had not understood about the loaves; their hearts were hardened.
When they had crossed over, they landed at Gennesaret and anchored there. As soon as they got out of the boat, people recognised Jesus. They ran throughout that whole region and carried those who were ill on mats to wherever they heard he was. And wherever he went – into villages, towns or countryside – they placed those who were ill in the market-places. They begged him to let them touch even the edge of his cloak, and all who touched it were healed.