Matthew 8:23-27; “And when He got into the boat, His disciples followed Him. And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was being swamped by the waves; but He was asleep. And they went and woke Him, saying, ‘Save us Lord, we are perishing!’ And He said to them, ‘Why are you afraid, O you of little faith.’ Then He rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. And the men marveled saying, ‘What sort of Man is this that even the winds and sea obey Him?'” (ESV – all emphasis mine)
Before anyone thinks poorly of the Savior’s disciples, they had not been given the Holy Spirit yet, which took place on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2). Even though they witnessed the miracles the Savior performed in their presence, their faith was not strong enough for them to completely comprehend what was actually happening and that Jesus was actually the Son of God, and therefore was God (John 10:30).
One of the apostles, Judas, saw what Jesus did, yet he used the miracles as a way of personal gain by stealing from their money pouch. Thing is, Jesus wasn’t surprised by anything his followers thought or did. He knew what each and every one of them was capable of and how they would respond when His time for Calvary would come.
On another occasion, as recorded in Matthew 14:22; 25-33, “Immediately He made the disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He dismissed the crowds…. And in the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea. But when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, ‘It is a ghost,’ and they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.’
“And Peter answered Him, ‘Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.’ He said, ‘Come.’ So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, ‘Lord Save Me!’ Jesus immediately reached out and took hold of him, saying to him, ‘O you of little faith, why did you doubt?’ And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped Him, saying, ‘Truly, you are the Son of God.'”
Matthew quoted the Savior several times as telling His disciples they had little faith. Thing is, given the times they were living in, I have no doubt that I probably would’ve reacted the same way. Only after receiving the Holy Spirit were they able to be bold in their declarations that Jesus is the Christ, The Messiah, the Son of the Living God, and some of them suffered horrible martyrdom because of it.
When they allowed the Holy Spirit to give them courage, they were willing to speak out boldly for Jesus. When Peter and John were threatened by the Pharisees to not teach at all in the name of Jesus, Acts 4:19-20, “But Peter and John answered them, ‘Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than God, you must judge; for we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard.'”
Paul was a persecutor of anyone who belonged to the “Way,” which was what the Christians were referred to prior to Antioch in Acts 11:26. After his conversion by the Lord Himself, Paul became one of the boldest apostles for the Savior. Even with his destructive past, he was able to associate with the other disciples, including James, the half-brother of Jesus. His biggest foes were the jealous Jews who route-punched him at just about every event. He turned to giving the word to the Gentiles, and the messages of Salvation spread all over the known world.
The love of our Savior is higher and stronger than any force on earth today. And even though our Heavenly Father could command all of us to worship and obey Him, He leaves us with the free-will choice of accepting or rejecting the free gift provided by Jesus on the cross.
John 3:16 is probably the most powerful demonstration there is about the Father’s love for us; “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
John 3:18 gives us the consequences of rejecting the Savior; “Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.”
In the past, I have made known that up until about 36 years ago, I was white-throne-judgment bound. I believed Jesus existed, as I was raised in a church and attended regularly until going into Military Service. From then until about age 40, I had no idea that I needed a personal relationship with My Savior.
Prayer warriors are a powerful force that is not used nearly enough. I had some that I found out had been praying for me regularly, and one day I was touched by what could only have been the Holy Spirit. An image went through my mind about where I was headed, and it was strong enough that I called on Jesus that day to forgive and save me.
The change wasn’t complete right away, but I began to read from God’s word every day. More and more, there were feelings that I had never experienced before, and the main one was that I loved My Savior and asked Him to continue to be a permanent part of my life. Now, I can’t imagine going a minute without Him in my heart, and I am proud to call Him My Savior, My Redeemer, and My Best Friend. I can truly say that “Love Lifted Me.”
In 1912, James Rowe wrote the song titled “Love Lifted Me.” Please consider the words of this powerful Hymn.
1.) I was sinking deep in sin, far from the peaceful shore. Very deeply stained within, sinking to rise no more. But the Master of the sea heard my despairing cry; from the waters lifted me, now safe am I.
Ref.) Love lifted me; love lifted me; when nothing else could help, love lifted me. Love lifted me; love lifted me; when nothing else could help, love lifted me.
2.) All my heart to Him I give, ever to Him I’ll cling. In His blessed presence live, ever His praises sing. Love so mighty and so true merits my soul’s best songs, faithful, loving service too, to Him belongs.
3.) Souls in danger, look above; Jesus completely saves. He will lift you by His love out of the angry waves. He’s the Master of the sea, billows His will obey; He your Savior wants to be; Be Saved Today.
With all the evil going on today, it’s obvious we are nearing the end of this age. The “birthing pains,” as spoken of by our Savior, started several years ago, and the “contractions” are stronger every day. Soon, we will hear the Trumpet of God followed by the shout of an archangel, and all the believers in Christ will be taken off this earth. The dead in Christ will rise first, followed by all believers who are alive. It will be within the twinkling of an eye. The verses to read about this are 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17 and 1 Corinthians 15:51-53.
My prayer every day is that the Lord would touch the hearts of all our loved ones who have not received and accepted Him as Savior yet. Also, my prayers include all who are saved, to give us strength and courage to hold on until we are no longer here.
Make no mistake, Satan and his evil forces are more active right now, as he knows the Bible as well as anyone. He knows his time is getting shorter, yet he still wants to steal as many souls from Jesus as possible. His destructive self-pride has not diminished one bit. Please don’t be one of those who fall for his lies. It’s all too easy to try and “blend in” with the world, but the price is way too steep to pay.
Call out to Jesus today to be your Savior. Romans 10:9-13 gives the simple but necessary steps to Salvation. The only thing hard is believing that the Creator of the universe loves you so much that when you receive and accept His Son, all your past sins are forgiven. Today would not be too early to call and could just spare you from the most horrible 7-year period of time this earth will ever go through. Jesus is waiting for your call. Hope to see you At Home.