Monday, May 21, 2007

Between the lines in Matt 14

kw: insight, bible study

The "walking on water" story is so familiar, at least in the West, it has become a metaphor for exceptional ability. The story came up in passing this past Sunday, and I was something new (to me). It requires a bit of reading between the lines, but not by much. Here is the passage form Matthew 14, right after Jesus calls to them to "fear not":

28Peter said to Him, "Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water."
29And He said, "Come!" And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus.
30But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, "Lord, save me!"
31Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, "You of little faith, why did you doubt?"
32When they got into the boat, the wind stopped.

In brief, Jesus called Peter, Peter got out of the boat and began to walk, then he was rattled by the wind and began to sink; he called to Jesus, who reached out and took him (with a mild rebuke)...then they got back in the boat. Now ask yourself, how far did Peter get? I think it was at least a few steps. So, between verse 31 and 32, what happened?

They walked back to the boat, together.

Answering a call from Jesus is one thing. Walking with Him is another, much better.

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