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Tuesday: Jesus’ Dominion Over Nature — 25 Comments

  1. Apparently unmindful of the presence of their Savior who was out of sight, the experienced boat crew did their best and only thought to wake up Jesus when they became desperate and feared perishing (Mark 4:38).

    Sometimes Christians resort to self-help and even the use of questionable methods to get ahead or overcome difficulties because they cannot at first trust the Master to work with their time-table. What if He does not care to wake up and make a way or calm the elements? They will not risk being left behind or taken out…that is until they sense real despair or fail miserably.

    As well if they act and appear to succeed by their action, the arm of flesh, then they take credit and celebrate their heroes, and point to their ‘good’ works as precedent for the next time and event.

    Some may have lost sight of the peace speaker, way maker and deliverer, thinking it rests on them to right the wrongs of this world and to champion their own assumed rights. Yet Jehovah had rescued Israel from slavery without civil agitation or political mobilization on the part of His people (Leviticus 22:33).

    Out of sight He may be, but if Jesus is still in the boat there is no need to panic (Luke 8:24). None perishes who is all in with the Savior. “The Lord‘s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear dull, that it cannot hear.” (Isaiah 59:1). Even if death intervenes there is a resurrection, for those who still believe (Revelation 14:13).

    God certainly works through human effort, but He does not depend on same. Believers are to engage the Master at the beginning, not as a last resort. And “whatever He says to you, do it.” (John 2:5) even if outnumbered by doubters.

  2. I feel it is important to bear in mind Jesus' words, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of Himself" (John 5:19, John 5:30).

    Yes, when Jesus "rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still", the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. (Mark 4:39-40) The effect on the minds of the others in the boat was HUGE.

    But when Jesus did this, He did it in the same way that Elijah and the apostle Paul raised up people from the dead, and did various miracles. He did it "by faith".

    "When Jesus was awakened to meet the storm, He was in perfect peace. There was no trace of fear in word or look, for no fear was in His heart. But He rested NOT in the possession of almighty power. It was NOT as the “Master of earth and sea and sky” that He reposed in quiet. That power He had laid down, and He says, “I can of Mine own self do nothing.” John 5:30. He trusted in the Father’s might. It was in faith — faith in God’s love and care — that Jesus rested, and the power of that word which stilled the storm was the power of God."

    (Desire of Ages p.336)

    Jesus lived by faith, and manifested that faith every day. Having showed the disciples what it was to live by faith, He says to the men in the boat, "where is YOUR faith?" (Lk 8:25)

  3. We can find joy in connecting to the power of Christ at all times and more so in times of trouble.Be still and know that I am God.Are we listening and trusting in God?

  4. I think maybe the issue of "so little faith" is the struggle we face? Even though Jesus is in my boat, things may not always turn out as expected or hoped for? Is my faith strong enough to trust that all things work together for good (even death/sleep) as long as I love God!? Praise God for his mercy!

  5. No one seeks God; " no one understands; no one seeks for God." Romans 3:11. Our desires and our naturel/character determine our choices, But we are never forced to act contrary to that naturel/character so in that respect, we Freely express ourselves through the choices we make. But where GOD is concerned, our sinful desire freely rejects GOD until he chooses to regenerate the dead, sinful nature in us and draw us to himself. Once that happens, and we are Truly Free indeed! AMEN!

  6. Why would Jesus rebuke the disciples for having little faith when they looked to Him for help? (Matthew 8:25,26) They had faith that He could save them from the storm and that was faith.

    I think they had forgotten that it was at Jesus' command that they got in the boat to go to the other side, and His commands are really promises. If Jesus said, let's go to the other side it only means that we WILL get to the other side. They must lose faith in that PROMISE to even entertain the thought that they would perish.

  7. When we're threatened by the storms of our lives, we can call on Jesus right away and be assured that He is near us and He will hear us. We don't have to wait until after we've tried everything in OUR own strength, because we have none. Be confident that when Jesus is in the "boat", IT IS WELL! There's no need to panic for He has promised "..before they call I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear" (Is. 65:24).
    So when the storms of life, (or hurricanes or even Tsunamis) assail you and you cry out "Master the tempest is raging; the billows are tossing high", Jesus will answer:

    "The winds and the waves shall obey my will
    Peace, be still! peace, be still!
    Whether the wrath of the storm tossed sea
    Or demons or men or whatever it be
    No water can swallow the ship where lies
    The Master of ocean and earth and skies;
    They all shall sweetly obey My will
    Peace, be still; peace, be still
    They all shall sweetly obey My will
    Peace, peace, BE STILL!"

    Jesus will talk to your storms for you. You don't have to say a word!
    Just sing the chorus of this reassuring hymn and be blessed!

  8. In this story, the great controversy is revealed in the perfect faith of Jesus during the wild storm. As our example, we are to exhibit such faith, and we are told of the remnant, that “none shall make them afraid”.

    Are we distracted by the wind and waves or is our faith sure and steadfast, keeping us in perfect peace during the greatest of storms? With out faith, we cannot please God, but if our mind is stayed upon Him, we will find that perfect peace.

    Jesus did not use HIS power in the calming of the storm, in doing that He would fail to be our example in all things. He only demonstrated the power of faith that every believer could have. Jesus was ever inviting, but never urged upon anyone, leaving each to choose. All who work in His manner will do the same.

    The great controversy is about making the choice of Self vs God as the enthroned ruler of our lives. Faith chooses the LORD, unbelief defaults to Self. No one is passive in this controversy, for even passive is a choice. Faith is never passive, and cannot be regardless of what we believe, and the storms of life bear out this truth don't they?

    • Robert, I can't tell you what a blessing your post is to me. "Jesus did not use HIS power in the calming of the storm, in doing that He would fail to be our example in all things. He only demonstrated the power of faith that every believer could have." This comment in particular resonated long and loudly for me (although I would consider replacing "could" with "must"). It reminds me of this quote from Ellen White: "The life of Christ has shown what humanity can do by being partaker of the divine nature. All that Christ received from God we too may have." (COL 149.2) "All" is an absolute; no exceptions.

      I fear that many of us, including myself, fail to recognize the degree to which Jesus invites us to, by faith and the power of the Holy Spirit, follow Him. Recently I have been pondering whether or not there is a line in Jesus' life which we are not to cross. Phil. 2:5-8 suggests that there is none.

      • I meant to add Luke 9:23 to that final sentence but didn't catch it soon enough. "Taken together, Phil. 2:5-8 and Luke 9:23 suggest there is none."

        • In a sense we are to do "GREATER" things than Jesus (because His time here was relatively short) (John 14:12), but in a sense "we can never equal the pattern" He left us.

          "Christ is our pattern, the perfect and holy example that has been given us to follow. We can never equal the pattern, but we may imitate and resemble it according to our ability..." (Christ Triumphant p.204)

          Nevertheless, it is certainly true that Jesus employed NO ADVANTAGE that any other child of God cannot have access to. And "Jesus, the world's Redeemer, could only keep the commandments of God in the same way that humanity can keep them." (7Bible Comments p.929) His righteousness was, and our righteousness is, achieved "by faith".

          All the miracles He performed were done "by faith", and I also believe that "Jesus did not use HIS power in the calming of the storm". The disciples could have done it.

          • That last paragraph is powerful, Stewart. Of course you are absolutely correct that the disciples could have, by faith, done what Jesus did. When Jesus asks the disciples in Mark 4:40 " is it that ye have no faith?", usually we think He is saying "Why don't you have faith in Me and My ability to calm the storm?" I believe what He means is "Why don't you have faith in our Father, even as I have faith in our Father? If you did, you would be able to calm the storm as I did." I have to admit that I had not seen it this way until you said it.

          • I appreciate your response Jeffrey.

            The concept that we might possess "the faith of Jesus" (Rev 14:12), [and that even the disciples might have possessed it,] is, in some respects, well known, but in other respects, it seems to be a strange, unwelcome intruder.

            Previously in the thread I tried to express the view - somewhat indirectly I must admit - but it was not as plainly put as "the disciples could have done it."

            "... when Jesus did this, He did it in the same way that Elijah and the apostle Paul raised up people from the dead, and did various [other] miracles. He did it "by faith".

            ...Jesus lived by faith, and manifested that faith every day. Having showed the disciples what it was to live by faith, He says to the men in the boat, "where is YOUR faith?" (Lk 8:25)

  9. Humanity has struggled and continues to struggle for inner peace and calm throughout the ages. When the tempests of trouble and temptation gather we are seized with fear and, like the disciples of Jesus did, we forget God's promises: "Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning. Great is His faithfulness." Lamentations 3:22, 23. The disciples were consumed by fear and distress. They completely forgot about the Lord. Only when they were in their emotional breaking point, despair and helplessness did they turn to Jesus for help. Is this not our daily experience too? Look how in shock, despair and dismay they began to blame Christ, "Carest Thou not that we perish?" This reminds me of Isaiah 57:20 "The wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest....." Sin that continues to ravage our lives has also eaten away our peace. The disciples were with the "Prince of Peace" (Isa 9:6) but sadly they forgot that fact at a crucial time.

    No doubt satan caused the storm in his bid to continue his fight with Jesus. Here we see the great controversy being played out! Again he lost out miserably, Christ arose from His sleep and simply raised that hand of authority and the billowing waves became calm. It's so easy for us human beings to forget all the promises and assurances of God when confronted with the waves of life's problems and we take the blame to the throne of grace! The Bible says, "Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time: casting all your cares upon Him for He cares for you." 1 Peter 5: 6, 7.

    On the 10th April 1912 the British giant ship called the Titanic set sail on its maiden voyage from Southampton. Captain John Smith boasted that day:"I cannot imagine any condition which would cause a ship to founder. I cannot conceive of any vital disaster happening to this vessel. Modern shipbuilding has gone beyond that." But four days later on a moonless night of 14 April, 1912 the Titanic hit an iceberg and in less than 3 hours the Titanic slipped underneath its watery grave and only 866 out of 2,200 passengers were rescued. Saints, I want to remind you that over two thousand years ago an unsinkable and unstoppable ship full of sea water floated because Jesus was on board!!! Jesus never fails!!!

  10. That's a powerful message Bro Ray
    We will get to the other side
    We will cross the Red sea
    We will cross the Jordan river
    Finally we will stand on the sea of glass with Jesus
    Praise the Lord

    • Hi Bud,
      The title is "Master the Tempest is Raging" but sadly it is not in the current hymnal, only in the old version S.D.A. Hymnal. You can search online for the lyrics and possibly a musical performance.

    • I remembered singing this song "Master the Tempest is Raging" in the old hymnal. It takes on a deeper meaning made profound with the above commentaries.

  11. I thank my God very much for inspiring the disciples to record this particular story of their experience with Him through the storm because for many centuries, it has brought comfort to many troubled souls! Including mine!

  12. I know the following verse speaks to eating food but I think it somehow also answers the final question of the lesson today.

    "But take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak." 1 Corinthians 8:9


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