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Mark 6:45-51 JESUS: THE ULTIMATE SOURCE OF PEACE

Intro: Ill. The context and the fear of the Disciples. This parallels our lives at times. Though we may have never been in a ship during a storm on the Sea of Galilee, we all get into storms from time to time. When we do, we can count on Jesus to come to our rescue as He did for those 12 men in that boat. When Jesus arrived at the boat, He addressed three areas of life that were of major concern for the Disciples. As He did, He was able to replace their fear with His peace. Let's take a few minutes to dissect these brief, but powerful words from the lips of Jesus as recorded in verse 50. Because in this short statement we learn the glorious truth that Jesus is the ultimate source of peace for the believer. As we prepare to enter this New Year, there are plenty of unknowns ahead for every one of us. It is good to know that the Lord Jesus already knows about them all and is able to give us the peace we need and desire during the troublesome times that are ahead for us all. Notice the three areas which were addressed by the Lord Jesus that night.

I. HE ADDRESSED THEIR FEAR

( Ill. Afraid of death and the storm!) (When Jesus said, "Be of good cheer", it was as if He were saying to everyone of us, "Do not fear the storms of life!" That is a lot easier to say than it is to do, but there are several good reasons why we should refuse to fear the storms life brings our way.)

A. V. 48; 51 Storms Are Under His Control (Ill. The context. The disciples are terrified. They are struggling, and they are afraid that they are going to die. Jesus, however, uses the very thing they fear as a means to come to them. He demonstrated His control over their situation by walking on the water and later by calming the storm.) (Ill. We serve a mighty big God! Job describes His power like this, Job 9:5-13. There are times when life appears out of control, but let me remind every child of God in this room today that Jesus is still in control of your life, Ill. Psa. 37:23. He is still walking on the waves of your stormy life and has the power to calm those waves at His will. Therefore, He is absolutely worthy of our trust and of our faith. He is in control!)

B. V. 45 Storms Are Part Of His Plan For Our Lives (Ill. The context. The disciples were out there in that boat in the middle of that storm simply because they were in the will of God. They were in the storm because Jesus sent them there!) (Ill. Look out for these preachers who tell you that it is never God's will for the child of God to suffer or go through tough times. They are preaching a lie and are false prophets! The truth is, storms are to be expected, but not feared. They have been sent to us to help us grow more into the image of the Lord Jesus - 2 Cor. 4:17.)(There are 2 things to remember during any stormy time of life: 1. God knows where we are and what we are facing - Job 23:10 2. God allows what He does for our good and for His glory - Rom. 8:28)

C. V. 51 Storms Are Always Of Limited Duration (Ill. I am sure the Disciples thought that they were finished. It probably appeared to them that this storm wasn't going to end before they themselves has perished in its fury. However, when Jesus came on the scene, He was able to show them that there is always an end to the storm.) (Ill. May I remind you that Jesus knows what you are facing and He knows what you are able to take. He will not allow you to be tested above your limits of endurance - 1 Cor. 10:13.)

(Ill. Never forget that this storm that you are in today, or the one you may face tomorrow did not come to stay, but they all just came to pass .)

(Ill. We have addressed some pretty significant reasons for not fearing, it may do us well to speak for a moment about some of the things we find ourselves fearing. I suppose that fear takes a different shape for every person in this room. Some fear old age, others fear disease, some fear dying, others poverty. Whatever name we attach to it, the fact remains that we are all afflicted from time to time by fear. In all honesty, we would have to admit that most of the time our fears do not materialize. We worry over things that never come to pass in our lives. Ill. Four ministers were driving to a Bible conference. As they were traveling through central Ohio, their journey was suddenly interrupted by a loud "bang!" The driver hit the brakes and struggled to keep the car from swerving toward the shoulder of the road and possibly down a hill. After he successfully brought the car to a stop, all four men got out to see which tire had blown. Their concern turned to laughter when the driver sheepishly pointed to the spare mounted on the rear of the car. It was the blowout! Their fear resulted from a wrong conclusion. Often, we draw the wrong conclusions in life and, as a result, we are responsible for whipping up many of our own storms. Therefore, instead of worrying, we must learn to trust in the Lord Jesus during the stormy times of our lives.)

II. HE ADDRESSED THEIR FAITH

(Ill. When Jesus came to the disciples walking upon the water, they thought He was a spirit and cried out in fear. However, when He spoke to them, He addressed their fears, then He gave them ample reason to believe that help had arrived. When Jesus got there, He quickly identified Himself unto the disciples. He said, "It is I" This is an Emphatic Personal Pronoun - A statement of identification. It is as if Jesus were saying, "Fellows, do not be afraid of what you are facing, after all, the I AM is here!" Jesus was simply reminding those men of who He is.)

As I AM He is:

A. All Powerful - Luke 1:37; Job 42:2; Eph. 3:20 (Ill. He has proven His power time and again since the dawn of time. Just remember His power as it was revealed in the Creation of the world, Gen. 1-2. Remember His preservation of Noah, Gen. 6-7. Remember the miracles surrounding the deliverance of Israel from Egypt, Ex. 3-15. Over and over, God has proven that He has the power to exceed our wildest imaginations. He hasn't changed! He is still God and He is still the Almighty! If you have a mountain that needs moving, He is the only One who is qualified to get the job done. (Ill. The kind of power we are talking about is illustrated in Isaiah 40:12. This verse reminds us that God is able to spread His fingers and cover all the stars of Heaven. It could also mean that He placed them in their orbits with a simple flick of the finger. If He has that kind of power over the inanimate objects around us, imagine what kind of power He would unleash on the behalf of His children - Luke 12:32; Matt. 7:7-11.)(Ill. You can trust Him, He has the power to help!)

B. All Present - His very Name, "I AM" declares Him to be One who is ever present. Being the "I AM", He is always God, all the time! There has never been a time when He did not exist, and there will never be a time when He will not exist. Basically, all times that ever were, or ever will be, are right now to God. I know we cannot grasp something that profound, but there is a special promise to all of God's children. While God is existent at all times, past, present, and future, He is able to be present at all places as well. He has promised every child of God that He will be with them at all times, in all places, through all the difficulties of their lives - Matt. 28:20; Heb. 13:5. When the Lord says that He will not forsake us, the term literally means that He won't run out on us when the chips are down. God is not a fair weather friend, He is an all-weather friend. (Ill. You can trust Him, He is present to help -)

Psa. 46:1, "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble." Psa. 145:18, "The LORD is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth.")

C. All Perceiving - By virtue of the fact that Jesus is God, He is One who knows all things. Nothing escapes His gaze as He ponders the ways of men - Pro. 15:3, "The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good."; Heb. 4:13, "Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do." When Job considered the knowledge of God he said, "He knoweth the way that I take and when I am tried, I shall come forth as gold." Job 23:10. What this means for the child of God is simply this: God is worthy of our trust because he knows exactly what we are facing second by second as we journey through life. He hasn't missed a thing that has happened to you. He knows and He understands, and He is able to help you in your time of need. You can trust Him, He sees your steps.)

(Ill. Ralph Abuhl had the thrilling experience of going on a short cruise on the aircraft carrier U.S.S. Kennedy. He saw jet fighters take off, land, and demonstrate bombing maneuvers. He was told about a practice that is followed on all U.S. aircraft carriers. Whenenver the planes are taking off or landing--a dangerous operation on a carrier--the captain watches from the bridge. Even if the planes are flying around the clock, he stays on the bridge, catnapping between runs if necessary. Therefore, each time a pilot takes off in his highspeed aircraft or lands on the deck of that "floating airfield," he knows that his captain is watching.

Herein is a parallel to God's watch-care over us. Wherever we are, whatever bold endeavor we are involved in for Him, or whatever battle we may be fighting with our spiritual enemy, we have the confidence that the Lord of hosts is with us.)

(Ill. He is the great "I AM" His Name(s) declare His character! List some and their various meanings to the children of God.

He is:

1. Jehovah-Jireh - The Lord Is There

2. Jehovah-Rohi - The Lord Our Shepherd

3. Jehovah-Shalom - The Lord Our Peace

4. Jehovah-Rophi - The Lord Our Healer

5. Jehovah-Tsidkenu - The Lord Our Righteousness

6. Jehovah-Shammah - The Lord Is There

7. Jehovah-Nissi - The Lord Our Banner

8. Jehovah-M'kaddesh - The Lord Our Sanctifier

9. Jehovah-Heleyon - The Lord Most High

10. Elshaddai; Adonai; Alpha and Omega; He is what He needs to be all the time! The list could go on, but suffice it to say that God is all you will ever need Him to be regardless of where you find yourself, or what may come your way. Simply rest in the fact that He is "I AM!"



(Ill. The "I AM" statements of Jesus:

1. I Am the Bread of Life - John 6:35

2. I Am the Light of the World - John 8:12

3. I Am the Door - John 10:9

4. I Am the Good Shepherd - John 10:11

5. I Am the Resurrection and the Life - John 11:25

6. I Am the Way, the Truth and the Life - John 14:6

7. I Am the True Vine - John 15:1

Suffice it to say, that He is!)

III. HE ADDRESSED THEIR FUTURE (When Jesus came to the disciples that night, they were certain that their lives were over. They were preparing to die. Yet, when Jesus came, He let them know that He had a plan for their future. You see, in verse 45, he had told them to get on the ship and go to the other side. He knew where they were, was responsible for where they were and had a plane for them when they reached the other side! Compel - To force or push into!) (When HE spoke to them, His words were words of comfort and of hope. He spoke peace to their present and in doing so, let them know that they had a future ahead of them. Ill. "Be not afraid" - Present Active Imperative Literally - "Stop fearing now and never fear anything else ever again!")

(Ill. From a human perspective, the future looks bleak and there may not seem like there is a lot of hope. I mean, our President has been impeached, and we don't know how that is going to play out. In 12 months, we will enter a new millennium and there is considerable uncertainty as to what will happen then. Our society is, to a large degree, controlled by computers. When the year 2,000 rolls around, we are going to have to face the reality of the Y2K problem. Some predict it will be a minor annoyance, others say that it will spell the end of civilization as we know it. In our personal lives, there are many unknowns. Will we escape disease? Will families survive the pressures of life? Will those we love be all right? Will we have enough resources for the future? These are questions that only God can answer. However, we must leave the future in His capable hands and give ourselves over into the arms of absolute faith. As we face our futures, there are three truths that give us hope.)

A. He Is Ever Trustworthy - Regardless of where the road of life leads us, we can be absolutely certain that God will never cause us to face anything that is bad for us. He knows how to take care of His children and how to see them through - Rom. 8:28; 2 Cor. 4:17. Therefore, no matter what you may be called upon to face as a Christian, remember that He has plotted your course, planned your future and promised to get you home. He can be trusted.

B. He Is Ever Available - The disciples learned a valuable lesson that night in the sea of Galilee. That lesson is this: Never count God out! You may think He isn't around and that He doesn't care. In truth, He will never leave you and He will ever be at your side. He is always available for you. No matter what you face in life, no matter where you journey, God is always there and He is always seeking you best interests. He is always available when you call on His Name. Isa. 58:9, "Then shalt thou call, and the LORD shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am. If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity;" There may be few things you can truly count on in life, but Jesus is One you can always depend on. He is always available to His children.

C. He Is Ever Enough - As has already been said, there may be situation arise that we have no control over. There may be rough times ahead for the church and for God's people. There may be economic crisis and political upheaval, but through it all know that God is enough! He is all we will ever need to meet the needs of life that may arise. Notice Isa. 45:22, "Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else." God and God alone is our hope and our help as we journey through life. He is all-powerful, all-present and all-perceiving. If He isn't enough, then we have no hope at all. But, I challenge you this morning to put Him to the test and see for yourself that Jesus is enough!

He is Enough:

1. Spiritually - Heb. 7:25; Acts 4:12

2. Financially - Mal. 3:8-10; Phil. 4:19

3. Physically - Matt. 6:33

4. Emotionally - Isa. 26:3; 2 Tim. 1:7

5. Eternally - Rev. 21:1-7 (Ill. When we arrive in Heaven, the first One we will se is the One on the throne. When we see Him, we will know that He is Jesus and that He is enough forever!)

Conc: Before Jesus came into the world, the Prophet Isaiah said that His Name would be called, "Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God, the Prince of Peace." Isa. 9:6. When the storms of life are raging, always remember that Jesus is there for you. He longs to comfort your heart and replace your fears with His perfect peace - Phil. 4:6-7; John 14:27. To do this, you must first be willing to cast you cares onto Him and to come to Him by faith, 1 Pet. 5:7; Matt. 11:28. As your life unfolds, do not make Jesus your last resort, rather make Him your first resort. Turn to Him quickly and fully and He will bless you abundantly.

Now, it may be that there are those present who have never trusted Jesus for salvation and all that I have said to you today sounds good, but you are aware that these are promises made to others and not to you. Well, dear lost friend, Jesus has a promise for you as well. His promise is this, Acts 16:31, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house." His promise is that you can be forever saved by His grace if you will come to Him and receive Him as your Lord and Savior. It is a simple thing to do, but you must be willing to some. If you will, He will save you today.

What is your need? Bring it to Jesus and discover first hand that He truly is Enough!

Sermon By Alan Carr

 



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