< What I Learned Teaching Sunday School: Jesus Walks on Water - Part 1

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Jesus Walks on Water - Part 1

Let’s take John 6:15 – 22 apart. Look at verse 15: Jesus, knowing that they intended to come and make him king by force, withdrew again to a mountain by himself.

Why were they going to make Him a king at this point? Because He had just done the miracle of the feeding of the 5000.

There are a couple things we can say about this. One is they were caught up in the excitement, like crowds, especially big crowds often are. But, also, these people were ruled by Rome and they didn’t like that. They were Jews who only wanted God as their ruler. So there was kind of a resistance group at this time always looking for ways to overthrow the Roman’s hold over them. If they could have unlimited food, that would be a help. It would be one less thing they would have to depend on Rome for.

The crowd also would have remembered Moses writing in the Torah about the prophet coming, who they believed would be the Messiah. How He would feed them with manna.

Well, Jesus had just fed them with bread (manna). So maybe Jesus was the Messiah. But, their idea of the Messiah was a ruler king who would overthrow the Romans and sit on an earthly throne and rule them. And that was never God’s plan. Jesus will be king one day. And He is already king of every believer’s life. But, it wasn’t His mission back then and nothing would sway Him from God’s plan. Remember Satan tried to sway Him in the desert too. But, he couldn’t. Now it’s the people trying to tempt Him and He resists by going off in prayer. Jesus didn’t come to be popular or even to make people’s lives easier – He came to be Savior of the World!

One mistake people often still make is seeking Jesus for the wrong reasons. To get them out of a fix, or to give them something they think they need, instead of having a relationship with Him, believing He is who He says He is.

Praising and worshipping Him – yes – but also just talking to Him. Listening to Him. Trying to be more like Him. Doing what you know He wants you to do.

John 6: 16 – 17 When evening came, His disciples went down to the lake, where they got into a boat and set off across the lake for Capernaum. By now it was dark, and Jesus had not yet joined them.

Ok, so Jesus sends His disciples away. He didn’t want them to get any ideas about making Him king too! We know from other places in the Bible they didn’t always understand His mission either and at least one time the mother of James and John came to Jesus asking if her sons would have prominent places when Jesus came into His kingdom. They could have easily gotten caught up in the crowd.

So he sends them in the boat back to where they came from and He goes up the mountain to pray. Jesus often went somewhere to be alone in prayer and because it’s written about in the Bible it’s an important lesson for us. We need to get away and be still with God at times. We need to pray – just God and us.

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