Character of Jesus 31

The Character of Jesus 31

Matthew 14:13 – 36, Mark 6:30 – 56, Luke 9:10 – 17, John 6:1 – 21

Around the Northeast Side of Galilee

  • Following the Matthew account
  • Characteristic: Challenging others to step up in faith
    • (13)  Whether Jesus departed out of grief over the death of John, or to debrief after the sending out of the Twelve, or just to rest is not given.
    • (14)  “Moved by compassion.”  The crowd showed some level of faith to come to a rural area, confident that Jesus could and would heal the sick they brought along.  He had compassion with their concern for loved ones who needed healing.
    • (15 – 17)  Jesus did not just give the disciples the answer but rather challenged them to solve the problem.
    • (18 – 21)  Jesus organized the disciples to materially participate, not just watch.
    • (22 – 23)  Jesus had sent them ahead before.  However, since they are later surprised when Jesus shows up on the water, apparently their re-joining had not been planned.  They took off for the other side without a complete plan.
    • (24 – 27)  Certainly Jesus knew that this encounter would be frightening.  He did it anyway.
    • (28 – 33)  Jesus allowed Peter to take a risk, and, when he panicked, commented on his lack of faith.
    • (34 – 36)  Although they came for healing and not the Word, Jesus accommodated them.
  • Application: Challenging others to step up in faith
    • Are we moved by compassion at the plight of outsiders?
      • Do we differentiate between those with fledgling faith and those who want a handout only.
      • Do we assume that outsiders are doing the best they can with what they have?
      • Do we show them something miraculous or do we opt for the mundane?
    • Do we provide opportunities for the weak in faith to exercise that faith, even when we know they will not know what to do?
      • Let them be convinced that it cannot be done so they will realize that the impossible has been accomplished.
      • Let them participate rather than just watch.
      • Plan to surprise them with impossible results.
      • Let them take risks and let them fail.  But, make it a teaching moment.
      • Accommodate low-impact attempts to exercise faith.