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Heads Up

Heads Up

John 6:16-21

When someone gives you a “heads up”, what are they doing?

When we were baptized, according to Acts 2:38, our sins were forgiven.

But, in John 6 and Mark 6 and Matthew 14 Jesus gives us a “heads up” when it comes to being a disciple which may cause some to think twice before following Christ.

If you remember from last week Jesus has just performed a massive miracle when He fed a huge crowd from 5 loaves and 2 fish.

But the reality is Jesus comes to no man on man’s terms.

So, Jesus withdrew to the mountain away from this crowd that wants to force Him to be king.

 Now, in Matthew’s and Mark’s account of this they both say that Jesus “made” His disciples get in the boat!

Apparently there were some things that Jesus wanted His disciples to learn about being a disciple.

Listen, up to this point Jesus’ disciples have not personally experienced much in the way of difficulties; they have experienced some hardships while traveling with Jesus; some sore feet from walking; and in Matthew 10 when Jesus sent them out “to preach that the kingdom of heaven is at hand” He warned them that they would be rejected, and be hated, and perhaps even be persecuted.

But, telling is much different than showing.

And they do. They get in the boat! And that is what Jesus wants us to learn: disciples obey even when they don’t fully understand.

Jesus “makes His disciples” get in the boat, it is dark, and “the sea began to be stirred because a strong wind was blowing.”

Look at vs. 19: When therefore they had rowed about 3 or 4 miles…

 47 And when it was evening, the boat was in the midst of the sea, and He (Jesus) was alone on the land. 48 And seeing them straining (tormenting; painfully struggling) at the oars, for the wind was against them, at about the fourth watch of the night, He came to them,

Being a disciple of Christ, obeying Christ can lead us into some pretty scary circumstances; seemingly overwhelming circumstances, some discouraging circumstances all because you are doing what the Lord told you to do.

There will always be “waves” to toss us; and batter us; and threaten us. (Doctrine; fads; opinions).

For these disciples it was a struggle and it will be for us too.

So, the disciples are out on the sea, they are straining against the wind and the waves and in Mark 6:48 Mark tells us that “Jesus could see them straining at the oars.”

Look at this in Psalm 33:18. The writer says the “Lord’s eyes are on those who fear Him and whose hope is in His unfailing love.”

And look at vs. 19 again in John 6. Jesus sees them struggling and look what He does.

When therefore they had rowed about three or four miles, they beheld Jesus walking on the sea and drawing near to the boat; and they were frightened.

And the same is true for you and I.

Remember what Jesus said in Matthew 28:19-20:  “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. “

In Hebrews 13:5 the Lord said: “I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you,”

So Jesus sees them struggling; and He comes to them; and notice how He comes: Walking on the sea!

Do you remember what Jesus said in Matthew 28:18 right before He sent these same disciples out in what we call the “Great Commission?”

And the first thing you and I need to recognize as a disciple is when we find ourselves in a difficult situation because we are obeying what Christ has commanded is Who has dominion; Who is Sovereign over the circumstances that we are facing.

And then we must do what they did. Jesus walks on the sea; He draws near to the boat; they are frightened (Mark says they thought He was a ghost) and they cried out; and in vs. 20 He speaks to them and says, “It is I; do not be afraid.”

 I don’t know if it is pride or stubbornness or something else but far too often we face a difficult situation and we fail to let Jesus come into the boat. (Marriage; parenting; job; life)

And look at the end of vs. 21. They receive Jesus into the boat; and immediately the boat was at the land to which they were going.

Now, John leaves out one of the most interesting parts of this story. In Matthew’s account found in chapter 14 starting in vs. 25 Matthew says:

25 And in the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea. 26 And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were frightened, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out for fear. 27 But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.” 28 And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” 29 And He said, “Come!” And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But seeing the wind, he became afraid, and beginning to sink, he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!” 31 And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?”  32 And when they got into the boat, the wind stopped. 33 And those who were in the boat worshiped Him, saying, “You are certainly God’s Son!”

The Hebrew writer says in Heb 10:35:  Therefore, do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward.

So, these are all things we learn in disciple school.