“much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honour, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ”
we are continuing to learn from being with the disciples in the boat as they are straining, rowing against the wind and waves. Just as they, we also sometimes need to be grieved by trials so that the genuineness of our faith, being “much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honour, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ” —1 Peter 1:7.
Although Jesus wasn’t with them as they were going through this He didn’t abandon them. He was praying for them and watching them, and then we read:
about the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea, and would have passed them by. And when they saw Him walking on the sea, they supposed it was a ghost, and cried out; for they all saw Him and were troubled. But immediately He talked with them and said to them, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.” Then He went up into the boat to them, and the wind ceased”. –Mark 6:48-52
“He came to them… … and would pass them by…” Wait, wait – pass them by? Did He not care? Why would He pass them by and what would be the purpose of it?
We have been looking at this account through the eyes of Peter (who was one of the disciples in the boat) and what he learnt. These things he learnt he wants to impart to us, so he writes to us in the same letter we were previously looking at:
“Wherefore having girded up the loins of your mind, being sober, hope perfectly upon the grace that is being brought to you in the revelation of Jesus Christ”. —1 Peter 1 v. 13
This is one of the fundamental truths that Peter learnt, and that God wants us to understand. At the point of revelation of Jesus Christ grace is being brought to us. At the point of revelation grace is made available to us. This is very important because it is the way God has determined to work in our lives. If we don’t understand this we would suffer the lack of God’s power, as this is what grace is – as well as being God‘s favour, it is God’s enabling power. The purpose of being a disciple is to become like our Master. We can be, only and exactly what He is revealed to us to be. The channel upon which this enabling, transforming power comes to us is faith. It is always by grace through faith.
So now Jesus is revealed to them as walking on the sea. He is walking on the waves and against the wind. He is walking through it all whilst the disciples are straining because of it.
“He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked”. —1 John 2.6
He would pass them by because He was giving them the opportunity to see Him walking, so that they could see Him (revelation) –> and recognize Him –> and fallow their Master as obedient disciples, receiving enabling grace to do what they see He is doing.
He Is walking, they are struggling. Why? Because they have hardened their hearts in unbelief.
How are you doing? Are you walking or straining? It was the same wind and the same waves that they were struggling with which Jesus used to make a path for His glory and power. Whatever trial you are going through, whatever difficulties in life, God is able use them and make them into a path for His glory. His best is not to take them away, but to make you a victor over them and not a victim. The condition of our hearts will determine which one it is going to be.